Effect of boundary conditions on yield properties of human femoral trabecular bone

J. Panyasantisuk*, D. H. Pahr, P. K. Zysset

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal article (peer-reviewed)Journal article

24 Citations (Scopus)


Trabecular bone plays an important mechanical role in bone fractures and implant stability. Homogenized nonlinear finite element (FE) analysis of whole bones can deliver improved fracture risk and implant loosening assessment. Such simulations require the knowledge of mechanical properties such as an appropriate yield behavior and criterion for trabecular bone. Identification of a complete yield surface is extremely difficult experimentally but can be achieved in silico by using micro-FE analysis on cubical trabecular volume elements. Nevertheless, the influence of the boundary conditions (BCs), which are applied to such volume elements, on the obtained yield properties remains unknown. Therefore, this study compared homogenized yield properties along 17 load cases of 126 human femoral trabecular cubic specimens computed with classical kinematic uniform BCs (KUBCs) and a new set of mixed uniform BCs, namely periodicity-compatible mixed uniform BCs (PMUBCs). In stress space, PMUBCs lead to 7–72 % lower yield stresses compared to KUBCs. The yield surfaces obtained with both KUBCs and PMUBCs demonstrate a pressure-sensitive ellipsoidal shape. A volume fraction and fabric-based quadric yield function successfully fitted the yield surfaces of both BCs with a correlation coefficient R2≥ 0.93. As expected, yield strains show only a weak dependency on bone volume fraction and fabric. The role of the two BCs in homogenized FE analysis of whole bones will need to be investigated and validated with experimental results at the whole bone level in future studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1043-1053
Number of pages11
JournalBiomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 01 Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Boundary conditions
  • Femur
  • Finite element analysis
  • Trabecular bone
  • Yield criterion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Mechanical Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Effect of boundary conditions on yield properties of human femoral trabecular bone'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this