Abstract

The passive stability of the human knee joint under various loads and motions is provided by the multi-body articulations, menisci, and ligaments. In this study we sought to investigate the articulation response of the joint under varus-valgus moments and determine the influence of sectioning collaterals on the joint biomechanics. For this purpose, a nonlinear 3-D finite element (FE) model of the human knee [1] is used in which, the multi-body articulation between cartilage layers as well as the intervening menisci are treated as a frictionless nonlinear contact problem. The mechanical response of the intact joint at full extension is investigated in varus-valgus moments of up to 15N-m followed by two analyses that simulate MCL and LCL-deficient human knees under valgus and varus moments, respectively. Attention is focused on the mechanism of contact and load transmission across the tibiofemoral articulation and the overall biomechanics of the joint including joint kinematics, ligament forces, and stress/strain states in various components for the intact and collateral-deficient knee models.

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