Document Detail

The damping properties of the venous plexus of the heel region of the foot during simulated heelstrike.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16214490     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The damping mechanisms that are operational in the heel pad during the impact phase of locomotion have the important function to protect the musculo-skeletal system from injuries. How this is achieved is still not fully understood, as is for instance illustrated by the 'heel pad paradox', the observation that in vivo and in vitro experiments yielded widely different results. This paradox could so far only partially be explained. In the light of this paradox, and a previous study by our group, we conjectured that the venous plexus might contribute as a hydraulic shock absorber to the damping properties of the heel pad. To investigate this hypothesis in vivo, heel pads of 11 volunteers were subjected to pendulum impact tests, using velocities of 0.2, 0.4, and 0.6 m/s, and three physiologically different, consecutive conditions: (i) a relatively empty venous plexus, (ii) a congested venous plexus, and (iii) a decongested venous plexus. At congestion, the maximum impact force decreased slightly but significantly by 2.6% at 0.2 m/s and 1.8% at 0.4 m/s. This effect was no longer found at 0.6 m/s. Although these effects are rather small, they confirm the fundamental hypothesis that the venous plexus contributes to the damping properties of the heel pad during walking. It is likely that some underestimation of the effect has occurred.
René E Weijers; Alphons G H Kessels; Gerrit J Kemerink
Publication Detail:
Type:  Clinical Trial; Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2004-12-08
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of biomechanics     Volume:  38     ISSN:  0021-9290     ISO Abbreviation:  J Biomech     Publication Date:  2005 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2005-10-10     Completed Date:  2006-01-20     Revised Date:  2009-11-11    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0157375     Medline TA:  J Biomech     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  2423-30     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Radiology, University Hospital Maastricht, P. Debyelaan 25, 6202 AZ Maastricht, The Netherlands.
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MeSH Terms
Energy Transfer / physiology
Foot / blood supply,  physiology
Heel / blood supply*,  physiology*
Middle Aged
Physical Stimulation / methods
Stress, Mechanical
Veins / physiology*

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