Hopkins, A.R., Hansen, U.N., Amis, A.A., Taylor, M., Gronaud, N. and Anglin, C.
Finite element modelling of glenohumeral kinematics following total shoulder arthroplasty.
Journal of Biomechanics, 39, (13), . (doi:10.1016/j.jbiomech.2005.07.031).
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Due to the shallowness of the glenohumeral joint, a challenging but essential requirement of a glenohumeral prosthesis is the
prevention of joint dislocation. Weak glenoid bone stock and frequent dysfunction of the rotator cuff, both of which are common
with rheumatoid arthritis, make it particularly difficult to achieve this design goal. Although a variety of prosthetic designs are
commercially available only a few experimental studies have investigated the kinematics and dislocation characteristics of design
variations. Analytical or numerical methods, which are predictive and more cost-effective, are, apart from simple rigid-body
The current investigation presents the results of a finite element analysis of the kinematics of a total shoulder joint validated using
recently published experimental data for the same prostheses. The finite element model determined the loading required to dislocate
the humeral head, and the corresponding translations, to within 4% of the experimental data. The finite element method compared
dramatically better to the experimental data (mean difference ¼ 2.9%) than did rigid-body predictions (mean difference ¼ 37%).
The goal of this study was to develop an accurate method that in future studies can be used for further investigations of the effect of
design parameters on dislocation, particularly in the case of a dysfunctional rotator cuff. Inherently, the method also evaluates the
glenoid fixation stresses in the relatively weak glenoid bone stock. Hence, design characteristics can be simultaneously optimised
against dislocation as well as glenoid loosening.
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