The Center of Innovation for Biomaterials in Orthopedic Research (CBIOR) is working to promote translational research for biomaterials to produce new generation orthopedic devices and applications. CBIOR is sponsored by Via Christi Health and Wichita State University and receives funding from the Kansas Bioscience Authority and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.
The researchers are working to develop medical devices that use composite materials embedded with new smart technology to relay information and have the capability to provide for good x-ray penetration. The goal is to have these devices quickly enter the marketplace.
To help move this research further along, Wichita State University’s National Institute for Aviation Research has been awarded a $1.4 million grant from DOD to fund a project involving CIBOR. The research team is going to use the funding to develop a fast-setting composite stabilization device to treat extremity injuries in the battlefield.
The need to develop the right orthopedic care for the military is indicated by a high prevalence and severity of extremity injuries which account for 71 percent of combat casualties. Of these injuries, 51 percent are open wounds and 19 percent are fractures according to study by researchers at e SAIC and the Naval Research Center.
Most of these injuries can be attributed to the use of modern body armor which protects vital organs but has resulted in a pattern of battlefield injuries that produce traumas to the extremities. This is particularly apparent with explosive device injuries which result in extensive tissue damage, a high risk of contamination, and a requirement for orthopedic treatment in over half of the injuries.
CIBOR’s researchers are hoping to:
• Improve x-ray penetration of composites to permit radio frequency throughput a feature not presently possessed by current medical devices
• Develop stretchers, gurneys, and surgical tables using composite materials to enable sensors to be embedded to continuously monitor patient vital signs when the patient is being transported.
• Improve the development of surgical instruments formed from composite materials and then embed Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) sensors in the instrumentation
• Use composite materials to not only align and stabilize fractures and but also to embed sensors to monitor the patient’s healing progress
• Develop external braces made from composite materials with sensors to relay information to a hand-held sensor and enable the sensors to detect the amount of force exerted by the patient so that the brace can be adjusted as needed to make the patient more comfortable
For more information, go to www.ncibor.net/index.htm.