Femoral neck strain prediction during level walking using a combined musculoskeletal and finite element model approach

Musculoskeletal and finite element models describing forces in femur while walking
Musculoskeletal and finite element models describing forces in femur while walking

Coupled musculoskeletal-finite element modelling approaches have emerged in recent years as a novel way to investigate femoral neck loading during various daily activities. Combining personalised gait data with finite element models will not only allow us to study changes in motion/movement, but also their effects on critical internal structures, such as the femur. This study, for the first time, proposed a pipeline for a fully personalised multiscale (body-organ level) model to investigate the strain levels at the femoral neck during a normal gait walking cycle. Muscle forces derived from the body level musculoskeletal models were used as boundary constraints on the finite element femur models. The results suggested that personal variation among individuals is substantial in term of the amount of loads induced in the femoral neck during normal walking. However, the highest femoral neck loads occur at the toe-off and/or heel strike phases of the gait cycle. The model can be extended to be used for various applications, such as orthopaedics, where this modelling approach could help planning treatment for hip and knee replacement.

Altai, Z., Montefiori, E., van Veen, B., Paggiosi, M. A., McCloskey, E. V., Viceconti, M., Mazzà, C., Li, X. (2021), “Femoral neck strain prediction during level walking using a combined musculoskeletal and finite element model approach”, PLoS ONE, 16(2): e0245121, URL: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0245121

Dataset: https://doi.org/10.15131/shef.data.12854975