Structural FEA Skeletal Muscle Model as a Mean to Investigate Muscle Actuation and Dysfunction

This paper was produced for the 2019 NAFEMS World Congress in Quebec Canada

Resource Abstract

Mechanical parameters are known to play a key role in skeletal muscle actuation and global muscle mechanical compliance; however, their relationship with muscle pathological behavior has not yet been clearly established. Considerable efforts have been made in the last decades to understand parameters involved in muscle actuation; using a wide range of mechanical model types (both physical and numerical). Often, these models present significant shortcomings, either from a bias of physiological structures’ substitution or from the lack of detail or refinement within the mechanical interaction representation such as friction. Detailed numerical representation achieved with Finite Element Modelling helps to overcome some of these biases in order to investigate the effect of each component of the complex skeletal muscle structure composition on the global response. In parallel to skeletal muscle modelling, the study of soft tissues interaction in high energy events (i.e. Blasts, whiplash…) within physiological structures such as the neck has shown a significant influence of soft tissue compliance on injury prediction. Recent work benefited from representation of complex material behaviors within explicit dynamic finite element simulation in LS-Dyna and have highlighted the importance of mechanical characterisation. It has been demonstrated that skeletal muscle components such as fascia play a decisive role in the mechanical response in low acceleration events such as muscle actuation while being less driving in high acceleration events such as whiplash. Latter case however suggested the investigation of muscle injury based on Fasciae strains and strain-rates amplitudes. Numerical simulation is used in the present work to determine the influence of the major mechanical parameters in muscle actuation and to investigate how they could be responsible for muscle pathological behaviors. A refined finite element model of the skeletal muscle representing major mechanical components and their interaction is presented along with the driving parameters in its transfer function. The influence of these parameters is studied in different quasi-static and dynamic regimes. Finally, a relation is suggested between typical skeletal muscle dysfunction and several key parameters.

Document Details

AuthorBastien. H
Date 18th June 2019


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