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J Rehabil Res Dev. 2011;48(2):179-90.

Multiple vibration displacements at multiple vibration frequencies stress impact on human femur computational analysis.

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  • 1University of Wisconsin-Stout Discovery Center, Rm 123E STEM College, 712 S Broadway, Menomonie, WI 54751, USA.


Whole-body vibration training using single-frequency methods has been reported to improve bone mineral density. However, the intensities can exceed safe levels and have drawn unfavorable comments from subjects. In a previous article, whole-body vibration training using multiple vibration displacements at multiple vibration frequencies (MVDMVF) was reported. This article presents the computational simulation evaluation of stress dispersion on a femur with and without the MVDMVF input. A model of bone femur was developed from a computed tomography image of the lower limb with Mimics software from Materialise (Plymouth, Michigan). We analyzed the mesh model in COMSOL Multiphysics (COMSOL, Inc; Burlington, Massachusetts) with and without MVDMVF input, with constraints and load applied to the femur model. We compared the results with published joint stresses during walking, jogging, and stair-climbing and descending and with standard vibration exposure limits. Results showed stress levels on the femur are significantly higher with MVDMVF input than without. The stress levels were within the published levels during walking and stair-climbing and descending but below the stress levels during jogging. Our computational results demonstrate that MVDMVF generates stress level equivalent to the level during walking and stair-climbing. This evidence suggests that MVDMVF is safe for prolonged use in subjects with osteoporosis who ambulate independently.

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