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Research Papers

Biomechanical Studies on Patterns of Cranial Bone Fracture Using the Immature Porcine Model

[+] Author and Article Information
Roger C. Haut

Orthopaedic Biomechanics Laboratories,
Department of Radiology,
College of Osteopathic Medicine;
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
College of Engineering,
Michigan State University,
A407 East Fee Hall,
East Lansing, MI 48824
e-mail: haut@msu.edu

Feng Wei

Orthopaedic Biomechanics Laboratories,
Department of Radiology,
College of Osteopathic Medicine;
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
College of Engineering,
Michigan State University,
A-414B East Fee Hall,
East Lansing, MI 48824
e-mail: weifeng@msu.edu

Manuscript received June 14, 2016; final manuscript received August 2, 2016; published online January 19, 2017. Assoc. Editor: David Corr.

J Biomech Eng 139(2), 021001 (Jan 19, 2017) (11 pages) Paper No: BIO-16-1255; doi: 10.1115/1.4034430 History: Received June 14, 2016; Revised August 02, 2016

This review was prepared for the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Lissner Medal. It specifically discusses research performed in the Orthopaedic Biomechanics Laboratories on pediatric cranial bone mechanics and patterns of fracture in collaboration with the Forensic Anthropology Laboratory at Michigan State University. Cranial fractures are often an important element seen by forensic anthropologists during the investigation of pediatric trauma cases litigated in courts. While forensic anthropologists and forensic biomechanists are often called on to testify in these cases, there is little basic science developed in support of their testimony. The following is a review of studies conducted in the above laboratories and supported by the National Institute of Justice to begin an understanding of the mechanics and patterns of pediatric cranial bone fracture. With the lack of human pediatric specimens, the studies utilize an immature porcine model. Because much case evidence involves cranial bone fracture, the studies described below focus on determining input loading based on the resultant bone fracture pattern. The studies involve impact to the parietal bone, the most often fractured cranial bone, and begin with experiments on entrapped heads, progressing to those involving free-falling heads. The studies involve head drops onto different types and shapes of interfaces with variations of impact energy. The studies show linear fractures initiating from sutural boundaries, away from the impact site, for flat surface impacts, in contrast to depressed fractures for more focal impacts. The results have been incorporated into a “Fracture Printing Interface (FPI),” using machine learning and pattern recognition algorithms. The interface has been used to help interpret mechanisms of injury in pediatric death cases collected from medical examiner offices. The ultimate aim of this program of study is to develop a “Human Fracture Printing Interface” that can be used by forensic investigators in determining mechanisms of pediatric cranial bone fracture.

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Figures

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Fig. 8

Schematic of the free fall drop tower assembly. (Figure adapted from Ref. [58].)

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Fig. 9

GIS maps of the 2–9 day old age group for the free fall (a) and entrapped (b) head impacts. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [58].)

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Fig. 10

GIS maps of the 10–17 day old age group for the free fall (a) and entrapped (b) head impacts. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [58].)

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Fig. 7

GIS maps of the 19–28 day old rigid (a) and compliant (b) impacts of low energy. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [51].)

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Fig. 6

GIS maps of the 2–9 day old rigid (a) and compliant (b) impacts of low energy. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [51].)

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Fig. 5

GIS maps of the 19–28 day old rigid (a) and compliant (b) impacts of high energy. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [51].)

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Fig. 4

GIS maps of 2–9 day old rigid (a) and compliant (b) impacts of high energy. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [51].)

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Fig. 3

Representative fracture sites for (a) rigid and (b) compliant interface impacts (five-day-old specimens shown). Fractures initiated at the bone–suture boundaries. (Figure adapted from Ref. [48].)

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Fig. 2

Electronically controlled drop test fixture. (Figure adapted from Ref. [48].)

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Fig. 1

Bending rigidity of human and porcine specimens versus age (human—months; porcine—days). (Figure adapted from Ref. [41].)

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Fig. 11

Simplified model of the porcine cranium with overlays of modeled structures on true structures. Coronal cut of CT used for thickness comparison. *Feature not modeled. Feature simplified. #Suture width altered for consistency with material property data obtained previously. Dotted line represents location of frontal bone removal. (Figure adapted from Ref. [60].)

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Fig. 13

GIS maps of the impacted, right parietal bone fracture patterns for (a) rigid, (b) carpet 1, (c) carpet 2, and (d) carpet three interfaces. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [65].)

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Fig. 14

GIS maps of the posterior, occipital bone fracture patterns for (a) rigid, (b) carpet 1, (c) carpet 2, and (d) carpet three interfaces. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [65].)

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Fig. 15

GIS maps of the left or opposite-side parietal bone fracture patterns for (a) rigid, (b) carpet 1, (c) carpet 2, and (d) carpet three interfaces. Frequency means number of fracture occurrences at the same location. (Figure adapted from Ref. [65].)

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Fig. 12

Overlay of distribution of the top 80% principal tensile stresses from FE models on representative experimental cranial fractures for (a) rigid interface impact to a young specimen, (b) rigid interface impact to an old specimen, (c) compliant interface impact to a young specimen, and (d) compliant interface impact to an old specimen. Longer lines represent relatively higher stresses. (Figure adapted from Ref. [60].)

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Fig. 16

Specimens dropped against (a) the 2 in. diameter spherical shape, (b) the 5/8 in. diameter spherical shape, (c) the 90 deg edged interface, and (d) the 1/4 in. diameter flat-ended cylinder. (Figure adapted from Ref. [71].)

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Fig. 17

A sample decision tree to classify data from the porcine head onto a rigid surface into high and low energy impacts

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Fig. 18

Predicting accuracy as a function of the number of known class labels for prediction of energy level (a), constraint condition (b), and surface type (c). Two-input means that users provide 2 of 3 class labels as input. Similarly, one-input and zero-input mean that users provide 1 and 0 (cannot provide any) of three labels as input, respectively. (Figure adapted from Ref. [73].)

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