Biomechanical Factors in Adaptation of Bone Structure to Function

  • L. E. Lanyon


The general form of each bone, its attachments, and its anatomical relationships are all genetically determined and will develop in the absence of functional influences. However, the particular features on which each bone’s load-bearing competence depends (ie, its mass, girth, cortical thickness, curvature, and the density and arrangement of its cancellous bone) are all achieved, and will only persist in the presence of continued functional load bearing. Normality of skeletal structure, and the load-bearing competence it reflects, is therefore not a predetermined state but rather the cumulative achievement of local adaptation to load bearing throughout the skeleton. Skeletal fragility may be viewed as a failure or insufficiency in the process which normally matches skeletal structure to its load-bearing requirements.


Bone Mass Strain Distribution Load Bearing Peak Strain Remodelling Activity 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1986

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  • L. E. Lanyon

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