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J Biomech. 2000 Jul;33(7):889-93.

Factors influencing the output of an implantable force transducer.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, McClure Musculoskeletal Research Center, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT 05406-0084, USA.


The objective of this study was to evaluate the performance of the Arthroscopically Implantable Force Probe (AIFP; MicroStrain, Burlington VT) for measuring force in a patellar tendon graft. Transducer drift, reproducibility of output due to the number of loading cycles and device location, and sensitivity to the tendon cross-sectional area were investigated. The AIFP was initialized, and then implanted into five human patellar tendon grafts three times; twice within the same location and once in a different location. The tendons were cyclically loaded in uniaxial tension for 500 cycles in each insertion site. The AIFP was then removed from the tendon and the baseline output was remeasured. It was determined that transducer drift was negligible. The relationship between the tensile load applied to the graft and AIFP output was quadratic and specimen dependent. The cyclic load response of the tendon-AIFP interface demonstrated a 24.9% decrease over the first 20 loading cycles, and subsequent cycling yielded relatively reproducible output. The output of the transducer varied when it was removed from the tendon and then reimplanted in the same location (range 3.7-109. 4% error), as well as in the second location (range 1.5-202.8% error). No correlation was observed between the cross-sectional area of the tendon and transducer output. This study concludes that implantable force probes should be used with caution and calibrated without removing the transducer from the graft.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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