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Factors determining the level and changes in intra-articular pressure in the knee joint of the dog.

By S Nade and P J Newbold


Intra-articular pressure levels were determined for joint positions throughout the normal physiological range of movement of dogs' knee joints. Change in joint position resulted in change in intra-articular pressure. It was demonstrated that intra-articular pressure is highest with the joint in the fully flexed position. Minimum pressure was recorded at a position between 80 degrees and 120 degrees. Minimum pressures were usually subatmospheric. The rate of change of joint position affected intra-articular pressure. The relationship of intra-articular pressure and joint position before and after full flexion demonstrated a hysteresis effect; the pressures were lower than for the same joint position before flexion. Maintenance of the joint in the fully flexed position for increasing periods of time between repeated movement cycles resulted in a similar reduction, of constant magnitude, in pressure between joint positions before and after each period of flexion. However, there was also a progressive decrease in pressure for all joint angles over the total number of movement cycles. There is a contribution to intra-articular pressure of joint capsular compliance and fluid movement into and out of the joint (both of which are time-dependent). The recording of intra-articular pressure in conscious, upright dogs revealed similar pressure levels to those measured in anaesthetized supine dogs. The major determinants of intra-articular pressure in normal dog knee joints include joint size, synovial fluid volume, position of joint, peri-articular tissue and joint anatomy, membrane permeability, capsular compliance, and movement of fluid into and out of the joint

Topics: Research Article
Year: 1983
DOI identifier: 10.1113/jphysiol.1983.sp014657
OAI identifier:
Provided by: PubMed Central
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