UBC Faculty Research and Publications

A non-invasive, 3D, dynamic MRI method for measuring muscle moment arms in vivo : demonstration in the human ankle joint and Achilles tendon Clarke, E.C.; Martin, J.H.; d'Entremont, Agnes Germaine; Pandy, M.G.; Wilson, David R.; Herbert, R.D.

Abstract

Muscle moment arms are used widely in biomechanical analyses. Often they are measured in 2D or at a series of static joint positions. In the present study we demonstrate a simple MRI method for measuring muscle moment arms dynamically in 3D from a single range-of-motion cycle. We demonstrate this method in the Achilles tendon for comparison with other methods, and validate the method using a custom apparatus. The method involves registration of high-resolution joint geometry from MRI scans of the stationary joint with low-resolution geometries from ultrafast MRI scans of the slowly moving joint. Tibio-talar helical axes and 3D Achilles tendon moment arms were calculated throughout passive rotation for 10 adult subjects, and compared with recently published data. A simple validation was conducted by comparing MRI measurements with direct physical measurements made on a phantom. The moment arms measured using our method and others were similar and there was good agreement between physical measurements (mean 41.0 mm) and MRI measurements (mean 42.6 mm) made on the phantom. This new method can accurately measure muscle moment arms from a single range-of-motion cycle without the need to control rotation rate or gate the scanning. Supplementary data includes custom software to assist implementation.

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