The morphometry of soft tissue insertions on the tibial plateau: data acquisition and statistical shape analysis.
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This study characterized the soft tissue insertion morphometrics on the tibial plateau and their inter-relationships as well as variabilities. The outlines of the cruciate ligament and meniscal root insertions along with the medial and lateral cartilage on 20 cadaveric tibias (10 left and 10 right knees) were digitized and co-registered with corresponding CT-based 3D bone models. Generalized Procrustes Analysis was employed in conjunction with Principal Components Analysis to first create a geometric consensus based on tibial cartilage and then determine the means and variations of insertion morphometrics including shape, size, location, and inter-relationship measures. Step-wise regression analysis was conducted in search of parsimonious models relating the morphometric measures to the tibial plateau width and depth, and basic anthropometric and gender factors. The analyses resulted in statistical morphometric representations for Procrustes-superimposed cruciate ligament and meniscus insertions, and identified only a few moderate correlations (R2: 0.37-0.49). The study provided evidence challenging the isometric scaling based on a single dimension frequently employed in related morphometric studies, and data for evaluating cruciate ligament reconstruction strategies in terms of re-creating the native anatomy and minimizing the risk of iatrogenic injury. It paved the way for future development of computer-aided personalized orthopaedic surgery applications improving the quality of care and patient safety, and biomechanical models with a better population or average representation.