Date of Award

12-2017

Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering

Department

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Peter Gustafson

Second Advisor

Dr. Daniel Kujawski

Third Advisor

Dr. Andrew Geeslin

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access

Abstract

The effects of lateral meniscus posterior root avulsions (LMPRA) have been studied in combination with meniscofemoral ligament (MFL) deficiencies. The purpose of this study is to validate a set of biomechanical finite element analyses against previously reported experimental results to predict the contact area and peak contact pressure in the lateral tibiofemoral compartment of the knee during lateral meniscal root avulsions in combination with MFL deficiencies. Patient specific MRI data was used to develop finite element models for three distinct testing conditions: 1) intact, 2) lateral meniscus posterior root avulsion, and 3) lateral meniscus posterior root avulsion with deficient meniscofemoral ligaments. The model of each condition will maintain a fixed flexion angle of 0° under a 1,000 N compressive load. This work was compared against patient specific experimental data which proved to show agreeable results. The computational model reported results of 446 mm2 for contact area and 2.84 MPa for peak contact pressure at condition 1 – intact. These results were 14% less compared to those from the experimental study when comparing contact area and 22% less for peak contact pressure. Condition 2 – LMPRA – yielded contact area of 356 mm2 and 2.89 MPa for peak contact pressure. Contact area came in 32% less than the experimental data and the peak contact pressure was reported at 12% less. For condition 3 – LMPRA with deficient MFLs – contact area came in at 310 mm2 and peak contact pressure was 2.98 MPa. These results were only 2% more than the experimental data for contact area but 35% less for the peak contact pressure. These results clearly show that the MFL has major stabilizing effects for the knee when a LMPRA is present. While surgical intervention is the common approach to the occurrence of a LMPRA even with the presence of MFLs, this work confirms that the MFLs will add a secondary stabilizer in the knee against injury.

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