Boundary lubrication between the tendon and the pulley in the finger

J Bone Joint Surg Am. 1997 Feb;79(2):213-8.


The lubrication mechanism between the human flexor digitorum profundus tendon and the A2 pulley was investigated in vitro. The gliding resistance at the interface between the tendon and the pulley increased significantly after the tendon had been treated with a hyaluronidase solution. Alcian-blue staining of the surface of the tendon before and after it was treated with hyaluronidase suggested the presence of hyaluronate complex. Alcian blue-positive and hyaluronidase-sensitive materials, such as hyaluronate or proteoglycan, in the synovial membrane and the matrix of the tendon, may act as a boundary lubricant, facilitating the gliding and reducing the resistance between the tendon and the pulley.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Alcian Blue
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Cadaver
  • Coloring Agents
  • Fingers / physiology*
  • Friction
  • Humans
  • Hyaluronoglucosaminidase
  • Synovial Fluid / physiology*
  • Tendons / physiology*


  • Coloring Agents
  • Hyaluronoglucosaminidase
  • Alcian Blue