Published for the Institution by Mechanical Engineering Publications Ltd.
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers H, Journal of Engineering in Medicine vol:222 issue:H7 pages:1065-1071
Sealed pressure-sensitive film is frequently used to record contact characteristics in physiological joints. However, the effect on the pressure-recording characteristics of sealing the film when used in these circumstances has never been studied. This study compares the coefficient of variation, the standardized coefficient of variation, the tangent and secant contact stress gradients, and the actual pressures between unsealed and sealed Fuji film, in a simplified physiological joint model with a full-thickness surface defect. Unsealed film and sealed film were loaded through a range of nominal loads and the resulting stains were analysed by use of custom-made macros for the ImageJ image-processing program. The coefficient of variation did not exceed 5.7 per cent (sealed film), and the standardized coefficient of variation did not exceed 1.8 per cent (unsealed and sealed film). Contact stress gradients did not differ significantly. The recorded pressure at the level of surface defects was always about 0.2 MPa higher in the case of sealed film, and therefore predictable. It is concluded that sealing the film will not change the pressure-recording characteristics.