Validation of a clinical finite element model of the human lumbosacral spine

  • Yabo Guan
  • Narayan YoganandanEmail author
  • Jiangyue Zhang
  • Frank A. Pintar
  • Joesph F. Cusick
  • Christopher E. Wolfla
  • Dennis J. Maiman
Original Article


Very few finite element models on the lumbosacral spine have been reported because of its unique biomechanical characteristics. In addition, most of these lumbosacral spine models have been only validated with rotation at single moment values, ignoring the inherent nonlinear nature of the moment–rotation response of the spine. Because a majority of lumbar spine surgeries are performed between L4 and S1 levels, and the confidence in the stress analysis output depends on the model validation, the objective of the present study was to develop a unique finite element model of the lumbosacral junction. The clinically applicable model was validated throughout the entire nonlinear range. It was developed using computed tomography scans, subjected to flexion and extension, and left and right lateral bending loads, and quantitatively validated with cumulative variance analyses. Validation results for each loading mode and for each motion segment (L4-L5, L5-S1) and bisegment (L4-S1) are presented in the paper.


Finite Element Model Annulus Fibrosis Reference Node Cumulative Variance Coupling Element 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This study was supported in part by the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Research.


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Copyright information

© International Federation for Medical and Biological Engineering 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yabo Guan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Narayan Yoganandan
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Jiangyue Zhang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Frank A. Pintar
    • 1
    • 2
  • Joesph F. Cusick
    • 1
  • Christopher E. Wolfla
    • 1
  • Dennis J. Maiman
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Departments of NeurosurgeryMedical College of WisconsinMilwaukeeUSA
  2. 2.VA Medical CenterMilwaukeeUSA

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