University of Missouri
Mankind has explored the galaxies, the depths of the sea, and looked back millions of years into the past. But, there are still some surprisingly large gaps in our understanding of the human body and how it works. For example, the knee joint is at the center of the kinetic chain running from the foot to the pelvis. But the connection between the tibia and femur provides very little geometric constraint. Knee stability is achieved through the operation of a multitude of soft tissue structures. The details of how these structures work are still largely a mystery. MSC’s Adams, a multibody dynamics simulation solution, can provide the right insights to help get a better understanding of the inner workings of the knee.
With the use of Adams, MAC researchers have begun to take the steps to grasp the complexity of the menisci function in the knee. They found that increasing the ligament length by about 20% will result in almost a complete loss of force transfer through the menisci during walking. The reduction in the forces absorbed by the menisci increases the forces that were directly transmitted between the tibia and femur, increasing the potential for joint damage and pain. These results will enable researchers and physicians to target and prevent future pain and damage more efficiently than ever before.