The study of the mechanical properties of the annulus fibrosus of the intervertebral discs is significant to the study on the diseases of lumbar intervertebral discs in terms of both theoretical modelling and clinical application value. The annulus fibrosus tissue of the human intervertebral disc (IVD) has a very distinctive structure and behaviour. It consists of a solid porous matrix, saturated with water, which mainly contains proteoglycan and collagen fibres network. In this work a mathematical model for a fibred reinforced material including the osmotic pressure contribution was developed. This behaviour was implemented in a finite element (FE) model and numerical characterization and validation, based on experimental results, were carried out for the normal annulus tissue. The characterization of the model for a degenerated annulus was performed, and this was capable of reproducing the increase of stiffness and the reduction of its nonlinear material response and of its hydrophilic nature. Finally, this model was used to reproduce the degeneration of the L4L5 disc in a complete finite element lumbar spine model proving that a single level degeneration modifies the motion patterns and the loading of the segments above and below the degenerated disc.
"A Constitutive Model for the Annulus of Human Intervertebral Disc: Implications for Developing a Degeneration Model and Its Influence on Lumbar Spine Functioning." J. Appl. Math. 2014 (SI05) 1 - 15, 2014. https://doi.org/10.1155/2014/658719