Although alterations in knee joint loading resulting from injury have been shown to influence the development of osteoarthritis, actual in vivo loading conditions of the joint remain unknown. A method for determining in vivo ligament loads by reproducing joint specific in vivo kinematics using a robotic testing apparatus is described. The in vivo kinematics of the ovine stifle joint during walking were measured with 3D optical motion analysis using markers rigidly affixed to the tibia and femur. An additional independent single degree of freedom measuring device was also used to record a measure of motion. Following sacrifice, the joint was mounted in a robotic/universal force sensor test apparatus and referenced using a coordinate measuring machine. A parallel robot configuration was chosen over the conventional serial manipulator because of its greater accuracy and stiffness. Median normal gait kinematics were applied to the joint and the resulting accuracy compared. The mean error in reproduction as determined by the motion analysis system varied between and and and for the two individual tests. The mean error measured by the independent device was found to be and for the two experiments, respectively. This study demonstrates the ability of this system to reproduce in vivo kinematics of the ovine stifle joint in vitro. The importance of system stiffness is discussed to ensure accurate reproduction of joint motion.
Reproduction of In Vivo Motion Using a Parallel Robot
Howard, R. A., Rosvold, J. M., Darcy, S. P., Corr, D. T., Shrive, N. G., Tapper, J. E., Ronsky, J. L., Beveridge, J. E., Marchuk, L. L., and Frank, C. B. (May 1, 2007). "Reproduction of In Vivo Motion Using a Parallel Robot." ASME. J Biomech Eng. October 2007; 129(5): 743–749. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.2768983
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