Determination of the compressive material properties of the supraspinatus tendon

M. E. Zobitz, Z. P. Luo, K. N. An

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


A methodology was developed for determining the compressive properties of the supraspinatus tendon, based on finite element principles. Simplified three-dimensional models were created based on anatomical thickness measurements of unloaded supraspinatus tendons over 15 points. The tendon material was characterized as a composite structure of longitudinally arranged collagen fibers within an extrafibrillar matrix. The matrix was formulated as a hyperelastic material described by the Ogden form of the strain energy potential. The hyperelastic material parameters were parametrically manipulated until the analytical load-displacement results were similar to the results obtained from indentation testing. In the geometrically averaged tendon, the average ratio of experimental to theoretical maximum indentation displacement was 1.00 (SD: 0.01). The average normalization of residuals was 2.1 g (SD: 0.9g). Therefore, rite compressive material properties of the supraspinatus tendon extrafibrillar matrix were adequately derived with a first-order hyperelastic formulation. The initial compressive elastic modulus ranged from 0.024 to 0.090 MPa over the tendon surface and increased nonlinearly with additional compression. Using these material properties, the stresses induced during acromional impingement can be analyzed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-51
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Biomechanical Engineering
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Physiology (medical)


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