A quasi-dynamic nonlinear finite element model to investigate prosthetic interface stresses during walking for trans-tibial amputees

Xiaohong Jia, Ming Zhang, Xiaobing Li, Winson C C Lee

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Background. To predict the interface pressure between residual limb and prosthetic socket for trans-tibial amputees during walking. Methods. A quasi-dynamic finite element model was built based on the actual geometry of residual limb, internal bones and socket liner. To simulate the friction/slip boundary conditions between the skin and liner, automated surface-to-surface contact was used. Besides variable external loads and material inertia, the coupling between the large rigid displacement of knee joint and small elastic deformation of residual limb and prosthetic components were also considered. Results. Interface pressure distribution was found to have the same profile during walking. The high pressures fall over popliteal depression, middle patella tendon, lateral tibia and medial tibia regions. Interface pressure predicted by static or quasi-dynamic analysis had the similar double-peaked waveform shape in stance phase. Interpretation. The consideration of inertial effects and motion of knee joint cause 210% average variation of the area between the pressure curve and the horizontal line of pressure threshold between two cases, even though there is only a small change in the peak pressure. The findings in this paper show that the coupling dynamic effects of inertial loads and knee flexion must be considered to study interface pressure between residual limb and prosthetic socket during walking.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)630-635
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Biomechanics
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2005


  • Finite element analysis
  • Inertial loads
  • Interface pressure
  • Knee flexion
  • Prosthetic socket

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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