Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Engineers develop way of detecting problems with artificial hip joints

03.08.2007
A more efficient way of detecting loosened artificial hip implants, which affect thousands of people every year, has been developed.

Engineers at the University of Bath have developed a diagnostic test which measures the frequency of sound produced when the femur bone in the leg is vibrated.

The new method is much more sensitive than the traditional method of using x-rays to detect the loosening of implants, and so can diagnose much smaller gaps around the implanted joint.

Around 50,000 people receive total hip replacements in the UK each year, and many will go on to develop pain from them. It is estimated that within 10 years of having an implant, about a quarter of patients will suffer pain from a loosening of the joint, which are joined to their leg bone by a special cement.

Surgeons find it difficult to know whether this from an infection, which can be cured by antibiotics, or because the joint has loosened, which means surgery is needed. A reliable diagnostic test is vital to save patients undergoing unnecessary surgery.

Dr James Cunningham, of the University of Bath’s Department of Mechanical Engineering, has developed the method of placing a piece of vibrating equipment on to the patient’s knee, which vibrates the femur and the hip joint.

An ultrasound device is attached to the hip and this picks up sound vibrations from the vibrating joint. If the sound’s frequencies are ‘pure’ – a regular wave of increasing and decreasing frequencies - then they know the joint is firmly fastened to the bone. If the sound waves are impure and irregular then they know that the joint has come loose.

“This finding is important because surgeons need to know if the pain the patient is feeling comes from a loose joint needing surgery, or from another cause,” said Dr Cunningham.

“The ultrasound method is better than any other method available now, including the traditional x-ray procedure, which can only pick up a large amount of loosening.”

Dr Cunningham’s work will appear shortly in the journal Medical Engineering and Physics.

Dr Cunningham hopes that the NHS and other medical organisations will use his findings to develop the device for use in hospitals.

Tony Trueman | alfa
Further information:
http://www.bath.ac.uk/news/2007/8/2/hip-joint.html

More articles from Medical Engineering:

nachricht Novel PET tracer identifies most bacterial infections
06.10.2017 | Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging

nachricht Teleoperating robots with virtual reality
05.10.2017 | Massachusetts Institute of Technology, CSAIL

All articles from Medical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

Im Focus: New nanomaterial can extract hydrogen fuel from seawater

Hybrid material converts more sunlight and can weather seawater's harsh conditions

It's possible to produce hydrogen to power fuel cells by extracting the gas from seawater, but the electricity required to do it makes the process costly. UCF...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Study suggests oysters offer hot spot for reducing nutrient pollution

17.10.2017 | Life Sciences

Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

17.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

World first for reading digitally encoded synthetic molecules

17.10.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>