Decreased Functional Ability and Altered Joint Loading with the

Decreased Functional Ability and Altered Joint Loading with the
Progression of Medial Compartment Knee Osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis (OA) is a major contributor to physical disability in middle age and
elderly individuals. While the economical, physical and emotional impact of this disease
is explicit, many of the biomechanical alterations associated with the disease progression
are not well understood. Many of the previous investigations into biomechanical changes
associated with OA have not evaluated how these changes progress as the severity of OA
increases. In order to assess how OA severity affects the muscluloskeletal system, we are
proposing to investigate the progressive biomechanical and functional changes in subjects
with knee OA. In particular, we will utilize a cross-sectional design to understand how
multiple measures of joint loading and clinical functional assessments change with a
progressive increase in OA severity. We plan to utilize computational optimization
techniques to predict muscle forces and subsequent intersegmental joint compression
forces. In addition, we will incorporate a longitudinal strategy to evaluate the causative
relationship between medial compartment joint loading and decreased functional ability
in the same subjects with OA of the knee.