Deformations and Stresses in Soft Body Tissues of a Sitting Person

[+] Author and Article Information
W. W. Chow

Department of General Engineering, University of Illinois, Urbana, Ill.

E. I. Odell

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of South Alabama, Mobile, Ala.

J Biomech Eng 100(2), 79-87 (May 01, 1978) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3426196 History: Received November 14, 1977; Online October 21, 2010


This paper investigates the deformations and stresses in the buttocks of a person when he sits on a cushion. The study is motivated by the need for a better understanding of the design of wheelchair cushions and the prevention of decubitus ulcers. The finite element method is used on an axisymmetric model. Surface pressure distribution, surface friction, hydrostatic pressures and von Mises stresses are obtained. The finite element model reveals the three-dimensional state of stress at all internal locations for a typical human body. Thus the study complements the experimental measurements performed by many physicians and bioengineers.

Copyright © 1978 by ASME
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