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Finite Element Analysis of the Jaipur Foot

Implications for Design Improvement

Wolynski, Jakob G. BS; Wheatley, Benjamin B. PhD; Mali, Harlal Singh PhD; Jain, Anil K. MD; Haut Donahue, Tammy L. PhD

JPO: Journal of Prosthetics and Orthotics: July 2019 - Volume 31 - Issue 3 - p 181–188
doi: 10.1097/JPO.0000000000000253

Introduction The Jaipur Foot is a low-cost prosthetic limb developed by Dr. P.K. Sethi and implemented in clinics across India and the world. Although the device is well-suited for many geographic and socioeconomic areas, it suffers from an inconsistent lifespan.

Methods The purpose of this study was to use finite element analysis to parametrically simulate the Jaipur Foot to determine potential improvements to the prosthesis’ design. The resulting model used varied material properties and internal boundary conditions through two stages of the gait cycle to predict the effects on the likelihood of device failure. Further analysis investigating the effect on device mechanics by the change in material properties due to vulcanization was also completed.

Results Results suggested that the interface between microcellular rubber blocks is a concern for failure, which agrees with epidemiological studies of the prosthesis. Data further indicated changes in material property to result in substantial alterations to the stresses experienced within the prosthesis.

Conclusions Future work could use this model for alternative designs of the Jaipur Foot.

JAKOB G. WOLYNSKI, BS, is affiliated with the School of Biomedical Engineering, Colorado State University, Campus Delivery, Fort Collins, CO.

BENJAMIN B. WHEATLEY, PhD, is affiliated with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA.

HARLAL SINGH MALI, PhD, is affiliated with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Malaviya National Institute of Technology, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India.

ANIL K. JAIN, MD, is affiliated with the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Dr. P.K. Sethi Rehabilitation Centre, Santokba Durlabhji Memorial Hospital Bhawani Singh Marg, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India.

TAMMY L. HAUT DONAHUE, PhD, is affiliated with the Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA.

Correspondence to: Benjamin B. Wheatley, PhD, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Bucknell University, 1 Dent Drive, Lewisburg, PA 17837; email:

Online date: February 14, 2019

© 2019 by the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists.