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Acta Orthop. 2011 Jun;82(3):339-43. doi: 10.3109/17453674.2011.574564. Epub 2011 Apr 19.

Quadriceps force after TKA with femoral single radius.

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Orthopaedics Department, Hannover Medical School (MHH), Germany.



New implant designs have incorporated a single radius instead of a multiple radius to the femoral component in order to improve the mechanical function after TKA. We investigated the amount of quadriceps force required to extend the knee during an isokinetic extension cycle of different total knee designs, focusing on the radius of the femoral component (single vs. multiple).


Human knee specimens (n = 12, median patient age 68 (63-70) years) were tested in a kinematic knee-simulating machine untreated and after implantation of 2 types of knee prosthesis systems, one with a single femoral radius design and one with a multiple femoral radius design. During the test cycle, a hydraulic cylinder, which simulated the quadriceps muscle, applied sufficient force to the quadriceps tendon to produce a constant extension moment of 31 Nm. The quadriceps extension force was measured from 120° to full knee extension.


The shape of the quadriceps force curve was typically sinusoidal before and after TKA, reaching a maximum value of 1,493 N at 110°. With the single femoral radius design, quadriceps force was similar to that of the normal knee: 1,509 N at 110° flexion (p = 0.4). In contrast, the multiple femoral radius design showed an increase in quadriceps extension force relative to the normal knee, with a maximum of 1,721 N at 90° flexion (p = 0.03).


The single femoral radius design showed lower maximum extension forces than the multiple femoral radius design. In addition, with the single femoral radius design maximum quadriceps force needed to extend a constant extension force shifted to higher degrees of knee flexion, representing a more physiological quadriceps force pattern, which could have a positive effect on knee function after TKA.

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