Influence of loading direction due to physical activity on proximal femoral growth tendency

Priti Yadav, Marta Peña Fernández, Elena M. Gutierrez-Farewik*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
27 Downloads (Pure)


Longitudinal bone growth is regulated by mechanical forces arising from physical activity, whose directions and magnitudes depend on activity kinematics and intensity. This study aims to investigate the influence of common physical activities on proximal femoral morphological tendency due to growth at the femoral head growth plate. A subject-specific femur model based on magnetic resonance images of one able-bodied 6-year old child was developed, and the directions of hip contact force were described as load samples at a constant magnitude. Finite element analysis was performed to predict growth rate and growth direction, and expected changes in neck-shaft angle and femoral anteversion were computed corresponding to circa 4 months of growth. For most loading conditions, neck-shaft angle and femoral anteversion decreased during growth, corresponding to the femur's natural course during normal growth. The largest reduction in neck-shaft angle and femoral anteversion was approximately 0.25° and 0.15°. Our results suggest that most common physical activities induce the expected morphological changes in normal growth in able-bodied children. Understanding the influence of contact forces during less common activities on proximal femoral development might provide improved guidelines and treatment planning for children who have or are at risk of developing a femoral deformity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-91
Number of pages9
JournalMedical Engineering and Physics
Early online date25 Feb 2021
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021


  • Acetabular forces
  • Hydrostatic stress
  • Joint contact force
  • Octahedral shear stress
  • Osteogenic index

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biomedical Engineering


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