There is an individual tolerance to mechanical loading in compression induced deep tissue injury

Willeke A. Traa (Corresponding author), Mark C. van Turnhout, Jules L. Nelissen, Gustav J. Strijkers, Dan L. Bader, Cees W.J. Oomens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
2 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Deep tissue injury is a type of pressure ulcer which originates subcutaneously due to sustained mechanical loading. The relationship between mechanical compression and damage development has been extensively studied in 2D. However, recent studies have suggested that damage develops beyond the site of indentation. The objective of this study was to compare mechanical loading conditions to the associated damage in 3D. Methods: An indentation test was performed on the tibialis anterior muscle of rats (n = 39). Changes in the form of oedema and structural damage were monitored with MRI in an extensive region. The internal deformations were evaluated using MRI based 3D finite element models. Findings: Damage propagates away from the loaded region. The 3D analysis indicates that there is a subject specific tolerance to compression induced deep tissue injury. Interpretation: Individual tolerance is an important factor when considering the mechanical loading conditions which induce damage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-160
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Biomechanics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019


  • Deep tissue injury
  • Finite element analysis
  • Individual susceptibility
  • MRI
  • Pressure ulcers


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