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Influence of biomechanical parameters on cranial cruciate ligament–deficient or –intact canine stifle joints assessed by use of a computer simulation model

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  • 1 Department of Bioengineering, J. B. Speed School of Engineering, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40202.
  • | 2 Department of Bioengineering, J. B. Speed School of Engineering, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40202.
  • | 3 Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27607.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To investigate the influence of 4 biomechanical parameters on canine cranial cruciate ligament (CrCL)-intact and -deficient stifle joints.

SAMPLE Data for computer simulations of a healthy 5-year-old 33-kg neutered male Golden Retriever in a previously developed 3-D rigid body pelvic limb computer model simulating the stance phase during walking.

PROCEDURES Canine stifle joint biomechanics were assessed when biomechanical parameters (CrCL stiffness, CrCL prestrain, body weight, and stifle joint friction coefficient) were altered in the pelvic limb computer simulation model. Parameters were incrementally altered from baseline values to determine the influence on stifle joint outcome measures (ligament loads, relative tibial translation, and relative tibial rotation). Stifle joint outcome measures were compared between CrCL-intact and -deficient stifle joints for the range of parameters evaluated.

RESULTS In the CrCL-intact stifle joint, ligament loads were most sensitive to CrCL prestrain. In the CrCL-deficient stifle joint, ligament loads were most sensitive to body weight. Relative tibial translation was most sensitive to body weight, whereas relative tibial rotation was most sensitive to CrCL prestrain.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE In this study, computer model sensitivity analyses predicted that CrCL prestrain and body weight influenced stifle joint biomechanics. Cranial cruciate ligament laxity may influence the likelihood of CrCL deficiency. Body weight could play an important role in management of dogs with a CrCL-deficient stifle joint.

Contributor Notes

Address correspondence to Dr. Bertocci (g.bertocci@louisville.edu).