Computational Modeling of a Prosthetic Shoulder: Our Experience with the Anybody Modeling System

Y. Collet, P. Ttreault (Canada), J. Rasmussen (Denmark), N. Nuo, and N. Hagemeister (Canada)


Shoulder, rotator cuff tear, modeling, deltoid.


When wear or tear of the rotator cuff becomes non treatable, the glenohumeral joint degeneration can lead to upper limb pseudoparalysis, hence requiring a shoulder arthroplasty. Data indicating the performance of today’s prostheses remain unsatisfactory and unpredictable when studying the case of massive rotator cuff tear (MRCT). Computational modeling represents a promising tool for exploring new prosthesis design possibilities. Nevertheless, no MRCT-simulation with a musculoskeletal software is available in the literature. The AnyBody Modeling System has been used to reproduce the MRCT-shoulder in vitro and then to propose a novel prosthetic design that would facilitate the patient’s abduction movements following a MRCT. Results showed that with a lateral addition of 19mm on the humeral head, a deltoid strength lowering event occurred after 10° of abduction, reaching a level of -19% of the initial strength at 59°. This study has allowed for the generation of a new computational model that simulates a MRCT-shoulder, as well as the proposal of a non anatomical prosthesis design which purpose is to reduce the required middle deltoid strength during abduction.

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