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Who are Biomechanists?
A biomechanist might be an engineer or medical doctor; biomechanics, however, is not within the sole domain of either of these easily recognized professions.
Biomechanical vs. Medical
Biomechanics - the science concerned with the action of forces, internal and external, on the living body. (From Stedman’s Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions)
What is Biomechanics?
The discipline of biomechanics integrates the laws of physics and the working concepts of engineering...
When a Biomechanist can Help
In general, a biomechanist is a useful expert when liability questions involve human motion...
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Biokinetics
Who are Biomechanists?

Who are biochemists?  What is their role?  Biomechanics is an integrated science requiring parallel courses of study.  A biomechanist might be an engineer or medical doctor; biomechanics, however, is not within the sole domain of either of these easily recognized professions.  Review of an individual’s education, training, and work experience is necessary to determine whether a biomechanist is qualified to offer expert opinions regarding injury.  The minimum training-education for the biomechanist must include Newtonian mechanics, structural and functional human anatomy, human physiology, and injury biomechanics including a knowledge of human soft and hard tissue tolerances.  Medical parishioners are generally skilled in identifying and healing tissue damage, but they are not extensively trained in the mechanisms of tissue damage, occupant kinetics, or the response of human tissues to loading.  Engineers, on the other hand, understand the physics of movement and the principles necessary to analyze the mechanics of materials, but traditionally lack the detailed knowledge of human anatomy and physiology.  The biomechanist integrates aspects of both disciplines and fills the gap between the engineer’s explanation of external loading and the medical practitioner’s diagnosis and treatment of damage to human tissues.

The biomechanist plays a value role in both criminal and civil litigation when human tissue is an issue.  Where external forces have caused tissue damage, the result may vary from mild muscle strain to death.  The results of the event are generally documented by a medical practitioner (injury) or medical examiner (death).  The external event that produced the forces may or may not be known.  Often, the event has been described by an engineering analysis or accident reconstruction.  The role of the biomechanist is to function as the “interdisciplinary integrator”, discovering and describing how the interaction of the human body with the external environment occurred and determining the injury producing probability.  The biomechanist must then communicate the analysis and its results effectively via performance/presentation so that the court clearly sees the relationships between the event(s) and the probable relationship to the actual documented tissue damage (i.e., injury or death).

The biomechanist is the best professional based on education, training, and experience to function as the integrator of interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary information for the court.  To fulfill this integrator function objectively, each case must be systematically organized, rigorously analyzed, and impartially evaluated. The evidence available must be organized in a manner that illuminates important relationships, and the lack important evidence must also be documented along with its significance.  The strengths and weakness of the case must be clearly understood and presented.  Each case must be approached analytically; although the specific focus of the case may vary with the issues, injuries, and events, a consistent analytical approach must be maintained.

 
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