Although artificial hip or knee prosthesis are designed to last several years, approximately 17% of patients who receive a total joint replacement need early replacement surgery - a procedure which can cause serious complications for elderly patients. In order to help minimize the need for these operations, a team of chemical engineers at MIT have developed a new coating for implants that could help them better adhere to the patient's bone, preventing premature failure. The study is published in the journal Advanced Materials. Paula Hammond, the David H. Koch Professor in Engineering at MIT and senior author of the study, explained: "This would allow the implant to last much longer, to its natural lifetime, with lower risk of failure or infection." According to Hammond and lead author Nisarg Shah, a graduate student in Hammond's lab, the coating could also be used to improve dental implants and help heal fractures.
Another day, another four turns of the screw. That's just a part of life for people, primarily children, undergoing the long and difficult process of distraction osteogenesis, a method to correct bone deformities that leave one limb shorter than the other. A team of Rice University undergraduates has invented a device they hope will make the process safer and easier. In collaboration with Shriners Hospital for Children in Houston, the students came up with "LinDi, " a self-adjusting, automated linear distractor. It eliminates manual manipulation of the screw with a motorized process that makes the gradual growth of new bone a more natural process. And for the first time in such a device, they have built in a force-feedback loop that protects fragile tissues and nerves from being overstressed.
Weight training at a lower intensity but with more repetitions may be as effective for building muscle as lifting heavy weights says a new opinion piece in Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism. "The perspective provided in this review highlights that other resistance protocols, beyond the often discussed high-intensity training, can be effective in stimulating a muscle building response that may translate into bigger muscles after resistance training, " says lead author Nicholas Burd. "These findings have important implications from a public health standpoint because skeletal muscle mass is a large contributor to daily energy expenditure and it assists in weight management. Additionally, skeletal muscle mass, because of its overall size, is the primary site of blood sugar disposal and thus will likely play a role in reducing the risk for development of type II diabetes .
London Clinic consultant Mr. Dinesh Nathwani successfully performed the world's first BioPoly partial knee resurfacing procedure on the 9th January at The Advanced Therapies Centre, a newly launched clinical trials facility at The London Clinic, which aims to offer patients a range of innovative therapy choices by accessing trials and novel therapies. BioPoly knee surgery in combination with anti-inflammatories allows the patient to immediately bear weight on their joint by using a new material, which is a combination of hyaluronic acid and ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene. The material combination is sufficiently strong to take the weight of the body, whilst maintaining a degree of flexibility that other standard metal replacements cannot. It also improves the wear qualities of the prosthesis and has a biologically lubricated surface that effectively interacts with the body's natural tissues.
An artificial connection between the brain and muscles can restore complex hand movements in monkeys following paralysis, according to a study funded by the National Institutes of Health. In a report in the journal Nature, researchers describe how they combined two pieces of technology to create a neuroprosthesis a device that replaces lost or impaired nervous system function. One piece is a multi-electrode array implanted directly into the brain which serves as a brain-computer interface (BCI). The array allows researchers to detect the activity of about 100 brain cells and decipher the signals that generate arm and hand movements. The second piece is a functional electrical stimulation (FES) device that delivers electrical current to the paralyzed muscles, causing them to contract. The brain array activates the FES device directly, bypassing the spinal cord to allow intentional, brain-controlled muscle contractions and restore movement.