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The solution of elliptic diffusion operators is the computational bottleneck in many simulations in a wide range of engineering and scientific disciplines. We present a truly scalable-ultrascalable-algebraic multigrid (AMG) linear solver for the diffusion operator in unstructured elasticity problems. Scalability is demonstrated with speedup studies of a(More)
This study investigated the numerical convergence characteristics of specimen-specific "voxel-based" finite element models of 14 excised human cadaveric lumbar vertebral bodies (age: 37-87; M = 6, F = 8) that were generated automatically from clinical-type CT scans. With eventual clinical applications in mind, the ability of the model stiffness to predict(More)
We sought to test the hypothesis that a pedicle screw that has two parallel threads of different heights throughout the full length of the screw could increase both bone purchase and pull-out strength compared with a standard single-threaded screw of similar dimensions. A single-threaded pedicle screw and a double-threaded pedicle screw were respectively(More)
Trabecular bone is a complex material with substantial heterogeneity. Its elastic and strength properties vary widely across anatomic sites, and with aging and disease. Although these properties depend very much on density, the role of architecture and tissue material properties remain uncertain. It is interesting that the strains at which the bone fails(More)
Recent demographics demonstrate an increase in the number of elderly spinal cord injury patients, motivating the desire for a better understanding of age effects on injury susceptibility. Knowing that age and disease affect neurological tissue, there is a need to better understand the sensitivity of spinal cord injury mechanics to variations in tissue(More)
Because they are not reliably discriminated by areal bone mineral density (aBMD) measurements, it is unclear whether minimal vertebral deformities represent early osteoporotic fractures. To address this, we compared 90 postmenopausal women with no deformity (controls) with 142 women with one or more semiquantitative grade 1 (mild) deformities and 51 women(More)
Although the trabecular bone of the human vertebral body has been well characterized, the thin "cortical" shell and endplate that surround the trabecular centrum have not. In addition, the accuracy of estimating the thickness of the shell and endplate using computed tomography (CT) has not been evaluated directly. To address these issues, we measured the(More)
STUDY DESIGN A finite element parametric analysis to investigate the relative load carrying roles of the shell and centrum in the lumbar vertebral body. OBJECTIVE To address the issue of the structural role of the vertebral shell and clarify some of the contradictions raised by previous studies. SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA A number of experimental and(More)
The sensitivity of vertebral body strength to the distribution of axial forces along the endplate has not been comprehensively evaluated. Using quantitative computed tomography-based finite element models of 13 vertebral bodies, an optimization analysis was performed to determine the endplate force distributions that minimized (lower bound) and maximized(More)
Although age-related variations in areal bone mineral density (aBMD) and the prevalence of osteoporosis have been well characterized, there is a paucity of data on femoral strength in the population. Addressing this issue, we used finite-element analysis of quantitative computed tomographic scans to assess femoral strength in an age-stratified cohort of 362(More)