Shear strength of the human femoral capital epiphyseal plate

J Bone Joint Surg Am. 1976 Jan;58(1):94-103.


After the determination of the shear strength and modes of failure of the capital femoral epiphyseal plates in twenty-five pairs of hips obtained post mortem from children five days to fifteen years and ten months old, with the plate intact on one side and with the perichondrial fibrocartilaginous complex removed on the other, the gross and microscopic morphology was studied. The shear strength of the human epiphyseal plate varied with age and was greatly dependent on the surrounding perichondrial complex in infancy and early childhood, but less so in adolescence. When this complex was excised, the strength of the epiphyseal plate was diminished, especially in specimens from younger children. The forces necessary to cause slipping were found to be within the physiological range of the force that would be generated in overweight children, suggesting that purely mechanical factors may play a major role in the etiology of slipped capital femoral epiphysis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Biomechanical Phenomena*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Epiphyses / anatomy & histology
  • Epiphyses / physiology*
  • Epiphyses, Slipped / etiology
  • Female
  • Femur / anatomy & histology
  • Femur / physiology*
  • Femur Head / anatomy & histology
  • Femur Head / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Stress, Mechanical