The effect of thickness and elastic modulus of the anterior talofibular ligament on anterior ankle joint stiffness: A subject-specific finite element study

FRONTIERS IN BIOENGINEERING AND BIOTECHNOLOGY(2023)

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摘要
Ankle sprain is a frequent type of sports injury leading to lateral ligament injury. The anterior talofibular ligament (ATFL) is a primary ligamentous stabilizer of the ankle joint and typically the most vulnerable ligament injured in a lateral ankle sprain (LAS). This study aimed to quantitively investigate the effect of the thickness and elastic modulus of ATFL on anterior ankle joint stiffness (AAJS) by developing nine subject-specific finite element (FE) models under acute injury, chronic injury, and control conditions of ATFL. A 120 N forward force was applied at the posterior calcaneus leading to an anterior translation of the calcaneus and talus to simulate the anterior drawer test (ADT). In the results, the ratio of the forward force to the talar displacement was used to assess the AAJS, which increased by 5.85% in the acute group and decreased by 19.78% in the chronic group, compared to those of the control group. An empirical equation described the relationship between AAJS, thickness, and elastic modulus (R-square 0.98). The equation proposed in this study provided an approach to quantify AAJS and revealed the effect of the thickness and the elastic modulus of ATFL on ankle stability, which may shed light on the potential diagnosis of lateral ligament injury.
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anterior talofibular ligament, anterior ankle joint stiffness, ultrasound elastography, finite element analysis, lateral ankle sprains
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