Quantifying Skeletal Muscle Properties in Cadaveric Test Specimens: Effects of Mechanical Loading, Postmortem Time, and Freezer Storage

[+] Author and Article Information
C. A. Van Ee, A. L. Chasse, B. S. Myers

Department of Biomedical Engineering and Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708-0281

J Biomech Eng 122(1), 9-14 (Sep 05, 1999) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.429621 History: Received February 11, 1999; Revised September 05, 1999
Copyright © 2000 by ASME
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Schematic of the test battery illustrating the time at which tests were conducted and the nomenclature used. The first two experimental groups were formed to investigate both the temporal changes of muscle properties, the effect of mechanical stabilization, and the effect of repeated testing. The second two groups were formed to determine the effect of freezing on muscle properties and if the time of initiating the freezing process was significant. Tests with equal time at room temperature were compared.
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The stress–strain response showing the temporal changes in the mechanical properties postmortem for a typical specimen. Only small variations were observed for the first seven hours postmortem. As the muscle went into rigor, the stiffness greatly increased, reaching a peak at postmortem hour 12. After postmortem hour 24 the response showed a decrease in stiffness and shifted right becoming less stiff than the initial response (0.5 hours) between postmortem hours 26 and 30. The results of the regression to determine modulus (SL) and no-load strain (NL) are shown for 12, 42, and 72 hours postmortem. The decreased stiffness was the result of an increased no-load region.
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The average modulus for the Continuous group was not significantly different from its initial value until postmortem hour 10. The modulus value peaked at postmortem hour 15 and then decreased to a constant level with no significant differences occurring after 26 hours postmortem. Also shown is the highly variable modulus of muscle that was frozen prior to rigor (PreR-6) as the muscle underwent a delayed rigor process following thawing.
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The average no-load strain for the Continuous group was not significantly different from its initial value until postmortem hour 9. The no-load strain then decreased to a minimum at hour 14. After 36 hours the no-load strain continued to increase; however, the values were not significantly different from each other.
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The effect of mechanical stabilization on a typical muscle 0.5 hours postmortem. The effect of stabilization was small and only a few cycles were needed to stabilize the tissue mechanically.
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The mechanical stabilization effect at 48 hours postmortem for a typical specimen from the Single group. The no-load strain increased greatly during mechanical stabilization with large changes occurring in the first few loading cycles. A large number of cycles were required to stabilize the response.




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