Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of actavetsBioMed CentralBiomed Central Web Sitesearchsubmit a manuscriptregisterthis articleActa Veterinaria Scandinavica
Acta Vet Scand. 2012; 54(1): 21.
Published online Mar 30, 2012. doi:  10.1186/1751-0147-54-21
PMCID: PMC3351027
Axial forces and bending moments in the loaded rabbit tibia in vivo
Janin Reifenrath,corresponding author1 Daniel Gottschalk,2 Nina Angrisani,1 Silke Besdo,2 and Andrea Meyer-Lindenberg3
1Small Animal Clinic, University of Veterinary Medicine, Bünteweg 9, 30559 Hannover, Germany
2Institute of Continuum Mechanics, Appelstraße 11, 30167, Hannover, Germany
3Clinic for small animal surgery and reproduction, centre of clinical veterinary medicine, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Veterinärstr. 13, 80539, Munich, Germany
corresponding authorCorresponding author.
Janin Reifenrath: janin.reifenrath/at/; Daniel Gottschalk: Gottschalk/at/; Nina Angrisani: nina.angrisani/at/; Silke Besdo: Besdo/at/; Andrea Meyer-Lindenberg: Lindenberg/at/
Received December 21, 2011; Accepted March 30, 2012.
Different animal models are used as fracture models in orthopaedic research prior to implant use in humans, although biomechanical forces can differ to a great extend between species due to variable anatomic conditions, particularly with regard to the gait. The rabbit is an often used fracture model, but biomechanical data are very rare. The objective of the present study was to measure axial forces, bending moments, and bending axis directly in the rabbit tibia in vivo. The following hypothesis was tested: Axial forces and bending moments in the mid-diaphysis of rabbit tibia differ from other experimental animals or indirectly calculated data.
A minifixateur system with 4 force sensors was developed and attached to rabbit tibia (n = 4), which were subsequently ostectomised. Axial forces, bending moments and bending angles were calculated telemetrically during weight bearing in motion between 6 and 42 days post operation.
Highest single values were 201% body weight [% bw] for axial forces and 409% bw cm for bending moments. Whereas there was a continous decrease in axial forces over time after day 10 (P = 0.03 on day 15), a decrease in bending moments was inconsistent (P = 0.03 on day 27). High values for bending moments were frequently, but not consistently, associated with high values for axial forces.
Axial forces in rabbit tibia exceeded axial forces in sheep, and differed from indirectly calculated data. The rabbit is an appropriate fracture model because axial loads and bending moments in rabbit tibia were more closely to human conditions than in sheep tibia as an animal model.
Keywords: Biomechanics, Hind leg, Telemetric, in vivo, Rabbit, Implant research, Tibia
Articles from Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica are provided here courtesy of
BioMed Central