Future Directions in Patellofemoral Imaging and 3D Modeling

Navya Dandu, Derrick M. Knapik, Nicholas A. Trasolini, Athan G. Zavras, Adam B. Yanke

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose of Review: Patellofemoral instability involves complex, three-dimensional pathological anatomy. However, current clinical evaluation and diagnosis relies on attempting to capture the pathology through numerous two-dimensional measurements. This current review focuses on recent advancements in patellofemoral imaging and three-dimensional modeling. Recent Findings: Several studies have demonstrated the utility of dynamic imaging modalities. Specifically, radiographic patellar tracking correlates with symptomatic instability, and quadriceps activation and weightbearing alter patellar kinematics. Further advancements include the study of three-dimensional models. Automation of commonly utilized measurements such as tibial tubercle–trochlear groove (TT-TG) distance has the potential to resolve issues with inter-rater reliability and fluctuation with knee flexion or tibial rotation. Future directions include development of robust computational models (e.g., finite element analysis) capable of incorporating patient-specific data for surgical planning purposes. Summary: While several studies have utilized novel dynamic imaging and modeling techniques to enhance our understanding of patellofemoral joint mechanics, these methods have yet to find a definitive clinical utility. Further investigation is required to develop practical implementation into clinical workflow.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-89
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Reviews in Musculoskeletal Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2022


  • Computational modeling
  • Dynamic imaging
  • Patellar instability
  • Patellar tracking


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