Development and evaluation of a new methodology for Soft Tissue Artifact compensation in the lower limb
Article dans une revue avec comité de lecture
Skin Marker (SM) based motion capture is the most widespread technique used for motion analysis. Yet, the accuracy is often hindered by Soft Tissue Artifact (STA). This is a major issue in clinical gait analysis where kinematic results are used for decision-making. It also has a considerable influence on the results of rigid body and Finite Element (FE) musculoskeletal models that rely on SM-based kinematics to estimate muscle, contact and ligament forces. Current techniques devised to compensate for STA, in particular multi-body optimization methods, often consider simplified joint models. Although joint personalization with anatomical constraints has improved kinematic estimation, these models yet don’t represent a fully reliable solution to the STA problem, thus allowing us to envisage an alternative approach. In this perspective, we propose to develop a conceptual FE-based model of the lower limb for STA compensation and evaluate it for 66 healthy subjects under level walking motor task. Both hip and knee joint kinematics were analyzed, considering both rotational and translational joint motion. Results showed that STA caused underestimation of the hip joint kinematics (up to 2.2°) for all rotational DoF, and overestimation of knee joint kinematics (up to 12°) except in flexion/extension. Joint kinematics, in particular the knee joint, appeared to be sensitive to soft tissue stiffness parameters (rotational and translational mean difference up to 1.5° and 3.4 mm). Analysis of the results using alternative joint representations highlighted the versatility of the proposed modeling approach. This work paves the way for using personalized models to compensate for STA in healthy subjects and different activities.
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