Development of l4-l5 lumbar spine finite element model to estimate spine loads

Minhye Jo, Soo Won Chae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Low back injury (LBI) often occurs during manual materials handling (MMH). Intradiscal pressure (IDP) is used to assess the risk of the LBI and is measured in vivo or by computer simulation. As for computer simulation, motion analysis and finite element (FE) analysis are usually employed. In this study, a FE model has been developed for L4-L5 segment with high risk of injury to predict LBI during manual lifting tasks. The FE model was composed of lumbar vertebrae, discs, and ligaments and a calibration process was performed to set the nonlinear material properties of the intervertebral disc. To validate the developed FE model, IDP and range of motion (ROM) under in vitro loading conditions were compared to the experiments and other FE studies in literature. Within in vitro range, IDP and ROM from the FE model were in agreement with results from previous studies. The FE model developed in this study can be scaled according to the subject used in the analysis integrating FE analysis to motion analysis, and is expected to be used in future work to estimate IDP and stress/strain in joint structures during occupational activities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)461-467
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the Korean Society for Precision Engineering
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Korean Society for Precision Engineeing. All rights reserved.


  • Finite element model
  • Intradiscal pressure
  • Lumbar spine
  • Range of motion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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