A Poroelastic Finite Element Formulation Including Transport and Swelling in Soft Tissue Structures

[+] Author and Article Information
B. R. Simon

Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering Department, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721

J. P. Liable

Civil & Environmental Engineering Department, The University of Vermont, Burlington, VT 05405

D. Pflaster

Donjoy Associates, 277 Loker Avenue, Carlsbad, CA 92008

Y. Yuan

Pacific Numerix, Inc., 7333 E. Doubletree Ranch Road, Suite #280, Scottsdale, AZ 85258

M. H. Krag

Department of Orthopaedics, The University of Vermont, Burlington, VT 05405

J Biomech Eng 118(1), 1-9 (Feb 01, 1996) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2795941 History: Received September 14, 1992; Revised January 04, 1995; Online October 30, 2007


A field theory is presented for the study of swelling in soft tissue structures that are modeled as poroelastic materials. As a first approximation, soft tissues are assumed to be linear isotropic materials undergoing infinitesimal strains. Material properties are identified that are necessary for the solution of initial boundary value problems where swelling and convection are significant. A finite element model is developed that includes the solid displacements, the relative fiuid displacements, and a representative concentration as the primary unknowns. A numerical example is presented based on a triphasic model. The finite model simulates a typical experimental protocol for soft tissue testing and demonstrates the interaction and coupling associated with relative fluid motion and swelling in a deforming poroelastic material. The theory and finite element model provide a starting point for nonlinear porohyperelastic transport-swelling analyses of soft tissue structures that include finite strains in anisotropic materials.

Copyright © 1996 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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