All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Jong-Eun Kim

Advisory Committee Members

Alan W Eberhardt

Alan M Shih

Document Type

Thesis

Date of Award

2012

Degree Name by School

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) School of Engineering

Abstract

Since the number of obese children in the U.S. has been increasing, the question arises whether obese children could be at higher or lower risk compared to nonobese children. The objective of this research was to investigate the risk of pediatric pelvic bone fracture in sideways falls using computational modeling and simulation considering various levels of obesity. Two sets of models were developed and tested. The first set was body component models. Several 10-year-old pelvis-femur complex models were developed. The models included biological soft tissue layers to reflect various levels of obesity, and they were validated against published experimental data. The second set was full body models in which the rest of body components were modeled by simple beams and mass elements for considering the whole body inertia. Sideways fall simulations were performed with the pelvis-femur complex models and full body models to see whether the cushion effect of the subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) layer or the momentum effect of whole body mass is more significant. A nonlinear explicit dynamic finite element code, LS-DYNA3D (LSTC, Livermore, CA) was used for model simulations. The simulation results indicate that the momentum effect of increased body mass of obese children would be more dominant over the cushion effect of the SAT layer.

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