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Noninvasive In Vivo Characterization of Pediatric Human Spine: 3-D Finite Element Study

[+] Author Affiliations
Elizabeth S. Doughty, Nesrin Sarigul-Klijn

University of California at Davis, Davis, CA

Paper No. IMECE2011-62300, pp. 429-434; 6 pages
  • ASME 2011 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 2: Biomedical and Biotechnology Engineering; Nanoengineering for Medicine and Biology
  • Denver, Colorado, USA, November 11–17, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5488-4
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


There are no full three-dimensional computational models of the pediatric spine to study the many diseases and disorders that afflict the immature spine using finite element analysis. To fully characterize the pediatric spine, we created a pediatric specific computational model of C1-L5 using noninvasive in vivo techniques to incorporate the differences between the adult and pediatric spines: un-fused vertebrae, lax ligaments, and higher water content in the intervertebral discs. Muscle follower loads were included in the model to simulate muscle activation for five muscles involved in spine stabilization. This paper is the first pediatric three-dimensional model developed to date. Due to a lack of experimental pediatric spinal studies, this 3-D computational model has the potential to become a surgical tool to ensure that the most appropriate technique is chosen for treating pediatric spinal dysfunctions such as congenital abnormalities, idiopathic scoliosis, and vertebral fractures.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME



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