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J Biomech Eng. 2002 Dec;124(6):714-23.

Accuracy of elastic property measurement in mandibular cortical bone is improved by using cylindrical specimens.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Sciences, Baylor College of Dentistry, Texas A&M University System, Health Science Center, Dallas, TX 75246, USA.


Ultrasonic determination of elastic properties in human craniofacial cortical bone is problematic because of a lack of information about the principal material axes, and because the cortex is often thinner than in long bones. This study investigated solutions that permit reasonable determination of elastic properties in the human mandible. We tested whether ultrasonic velocities could be reliably measured in cylindrical samples of aluminum and mandibular bone, and the effects of reduced specimen thickness. Results indicted that (1) varying shape had minimal effects on ultrasonic velocities or derived elastic properties, and (2) ultrasonic velocities have relatively increased measurement error as propagation distances decreased. The increased error in velocity measurements of mandibular cortical specimens of less than 1.2 mm in thickness should be considered when assessing the reliability of single measurements.

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