Chest and Abdomen Injury Biomechanics
The biomechanics of chest and abdomen injury is related to the amount and rate of deformation that occurs in an impact. Since the human body is viscoelastic, the reaction force developed to resist deformation increases with the speed of loading. This allows survival in high-speed impacts at force levels that would statically crush the body. The risk of high-speed impact injury is described by the viscous response (VC), which combines the amount and rate of deformation into a single injury criterion. For blunt chest and abdomen impact, the maximum viscous response for serious injury is VC = 1.0 m/s. For the same level of risk, the maximum compression is 32–40%. Historically, crash testing with dummies has also set a limit on the maximum chest acceleration at 60 g for no more than 3 ms. For abdominal impacts, the risk of submarining injury is related to compression, which can be evaluated with a frangible insert. Crush of the insert is correlated to injury risks.
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