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Self-adjustment mechanisms and their application for orthosis design

  • Advances in Biomechanics: from foundations to applications
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Medical orthoses aim at guiding anatomical joints along their natural trajectories while preventing pathological movements, especially in case of trauma or injuries. The motions that take place between bone surfaces have complex kinematics. These so-called arthrokinematic motions exhibit axes that move both in translation and rotation. Traditionally, orthoses are carefully adjusted and positioned such that their kinematics approximate the arthrokinematic movements as closely as possible in order to protect the joint. Adjustment procedures are typically long and tedious. We suggest in this paper another approach. We propose mechanisms having intrinsic self-aligning properties. They are designed such that their main axis self-adjusts with respect to the joint’s physiological axis during motion. When connected to a limb, their movement becomes homokinetic and they have the property of automatically minimizing internal stresses. The study is performed here in the planar case focusing on the most important component of the arthrokinematic motions of a knee joint.

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Correspondence to Viet Anh Dung Cai.

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Cai, V.A.D., Bidaud, P., Hayward, V. et al. Self-adjustment mechanisms and their application for orthosis design. Meccanica 52, 713–728 (2017).

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