Spine degeneration is a pathology that will affect 80% of the population. Since the intervertebral disks play an important role in transmitting loads through the spine, the aim of this study was to evaluate the biomechanical impact of disk properties on the load carried by healthy (Thompson grade I) and degenerated (Thompson grades III and IV) disks. A three-dimensional parametric poroelastic finite element model of the L4/L5 motion segment was developed. Grade I, grade II, and grade IV disks were modeled by altering the biomechanical properties of both the annulus and nucleus. Models were validated using published creep experiments, in which a constant compressive axial stress of 0.35 MPa was applied for 4 h. Pore pressure (PP) and effective stress were analyzed as a function of time following loading application (1 min, 5 min, 45 min, 125 min, and 245 min) and discal region along the midsagittal profile for each disk grade. A design of experiments was further implemented to analyze the influence of six disk parameters (disk height , fiber proportion , drained Young's modulus , and initial permeability of both the annulus and nucleus) on load-sharing for disk grades I and IV. Simulations of grade I, grade III, and grade IV disks agreed well with the available published experimental data. Disk height had a significant influence on the PP and during the entire loading history for both healthy and degenerated disk models. Young’s modulus of the annulus significantly affected not only in the annular region for both disk grades in the initial creep response but also in the nucleus zone for degenerated disks with further creep response. The nucleus and annulus permeabilities had a significant influence on the PP distribution for both disk grades, but this effect occurred at earlier stages of loading for degenerated than for healthy disk models. This is the first study that investigates the biomechanical influence of both geometrical and material disk properties on the load transfer of healthy and degenerated disks. Disk height is a significant parameter for both healthy and degenerated disks during the entire loading. Changes in the annulus stiffness, as well as in the annulus and nucleus permeability, control load-sharing in different ways for healthy and degenerated disks.
Biomechanical Influence of Disk Properties on the Load Transfer of Healthy and Degenerated Disks Using a Poroelastic Finite Element Model
- Views Icon Views
- Share Icon Share
- Search Site
Chagnon, A., Aubin, C., and Villemure, I. (October 20, 2010). "Biomechanical Influence of Disk Properties on the Load Transfer of Healthy and Degenerated Disks Using a Poroelastic Finite Element Model." ASME. J Biomech Eng. November 2010; 132(11): 111006. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4002550
Download citation file: