A technique is demonstrated, employing an instrumented spatial linkage, for the determination of the length patterns of discrete fiber bundles within a ligament under controlled loading conditions. The instrumented spatial linkage was used to measure the three-dimensional joint motion. The linkage was also used as a three-dimensional coordinate digitizer to determine the spatial location of bony landmarks and the ligament’s insertion areas. The length of pseudo fiber bundles was determined as the straight line distance between bone attachments. A comparison is presented, showing good agreement, between elongation patterns obtained from this method and those measured using an instrumented fine wire cable fiber. A sensitivity analysis was performed to evaluate the influence of tibial and femoral attachment location on the length pattern of fiber bundles of the anterior cruciate ligament. It was found that the relationship between fiber elongation and knee flexion depended strongly on the fibers femoral attachment location but not on its tibial attachment location.

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