Understanding the pathomechanics involved in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) of the wrist provides valuable information, which will invariably allow various therapeutic possibilities to be explored. The computational modelling of this disease permits the appropriate simulation to be conducted seamlessly. A study that underpins the fundamental concept that produces the biomechanical changes in a rheumatoid wrist was thus conducted through the use of finite element method. The RA model was constructed from computed tomography datasets, taking into account three major characteristics: synovial proliferation, cartilage destruction and ligamentous laxity. As control, a healthy wrist joint model was developed in parallel and compared. Cartilage was modelled based on the shape of the articulation while the ligaments were modelled with linear spring elements. A load-controlled analysis was performed simulating physiological hand grip loading conditions. The results demonstrated that the diseased model produced abnormal wrist extension and stress distribution as compared to the healthy wrist model. Due to the weakening of the ligaments, destruction of the cartilage and lower bone density, the altered biomechanical stresses were particularly evident at the radioscaphoid and capitolunate articulations which correlate to clinical findings. These results demonstrate the robust finding of the developed RA wrist model, which accurately predicted the pathological process.
- Finite element analysis,
- Load transmission,
- Rheumatoid arthritis,
- Tissue engineering
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/muralimalligaraman/13/