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For older population, a better understanding of the hip joint loading environment is needed for the prevention of hip pain, and the reduction of the stress fractures and fall risks. Using the motion analysis and inverse dynamics methods, combined with musculoskeletal modelling, static optimization, and finite element (FE) femur model, the difference of femoral neck strains between stair ascent vs. descent, young vs. older populations was compared. A two-way repeated-measures MANOVA was applied to test the effect of age and stair direction on the femoral neck strains. The strains at the femoral neck cross-section were greater for stair descent than ascent for both age groups (mostly P = 0.001 to 0006) but there was no difference between age groups. In this study, femoral neck strains represented bone loading environment in more direct ways than joint reaction forces/moments or joint contact forces, the risk of hip pain, falls and stress fractures might be greater during stair descent than ascent. Possible preventative methods to reduce these risks should be developed in the future studies.
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Deng, Chen; Gillette, Jason C.; and Derrick, Timothy R., "Finite element analysis of femoral neck strains during stair ascent and descent" (2021). Kinesiology Publications. 92.