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Comput Methods Biomech Biomed Engin. 2008 Feb;11(1):63-71. Epub 2007 Oct 15.

Evaluation of a patient-specific cost function to predict the influence of foot path on the knee adduction torque during gait.

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  • 1Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA.


A large external knee adduction torque during gait has been correlated with the progression of knee osteoarthritis (OA). Though foot path changes (e.g. toeing out) can reduce the adduction torque, no method currently exists to predict whether an optimal foot path exists for a specific patient. This study evaluates a patient-specific optimization cost function to predict how foot path changes influence both adduction torque peaks. Video motion and ground reaction data were collected from a patient with knee OA performing normal, toe out, and wide stance gait. Joint and inertial parameters in a dynamic, 27 degree-of-freedom, full-body gait model were calibrated to the patient's normal gait data. The model was then used in gait optimizations that predicted how the patient's adduction torque peaks would change due to changes in foot path. The cost function tracked the patient's normal gait data using weight factors calibrated to toe out gait and tested using wide stance gait. For both gait motions, the same cost function weights predicted the change in both adduction torque peaks to within 7% error. With further development, this approach may eventually permit the design of patient-specific rehabilitation procedures such as an optimal foot path for patients with knee OA.

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