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Spine Modeling

Detailed Anatomic Modeling of the Spine

Models and computer simulations have served countless purposes in biomechanical research.  Many of these models have been used to predict or estimate characteristrelativeics of human locomotion and mechanisms in body movement. Examples of such models include: linked segment models, used to estimate joint kinetics; muscle models, used to estimate individual muscle forces and energetics; and simulations of direct and inverse dynamics, used to estimate coordination and optimization of movement strategies.

An inverse dynamics model is currently under development to analyze three-dimensional human body motion, with special emphasis on the cervical and such models include: linked segment models, used to estimate joint kinetics; muscle models, used to estimate individual muscle forces and energetics; and simulations of direct and inverse dynamics, used to estimate coordination and optimization of movement strategies.

An inverse dynamics model is currently under development to analyze three-dimensional human body motion, with special emphasis on the cervical and lumbar spine and its response to various movements.  Our goal is to further couple the dynamic modeling predictions with detailed finite element sub-models of human spinal segments. 

Solid modeling techniques have been used to determine interface stresses, deformations, forces, pressures and alignments of anatomic structural components like bones, joints, and the surrounding supportive tissues (i.e.,  ligaments and tendons).   The finite element (FE) method provides an ideal tool for quantifying these values.  We are in the process of improving upon previous meshing techniques to create an anatomically accurate model of the lumbar spine.  Our goal is to automate the development of such anatomic models via advancements in imaging and mesh generation techniques.   Such models will enable us to predict variables such as stresses and deformations that are difficult, if not impossible to measure directly, on a patient-/subject-specific basis.  The FE models will also aid in assisting the design of surgical implants and devices.

 Contact Info

 Steve Beck

The University of Iowa
Center for Computer Aided Design (CCAD)
Research and Developement Project Manager
111 Engineering Research Facility, Iowa City, IA 52242
Telephone: (319) 384-0573         Fax: (319) 384-0542 
 E-mail: beck@ccad.uiowa.edu