SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Journal: Medical engineering & physics

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Functional electrical stimulation (FES) has shown effectiveness in restoring upper-limb movement post-stroke when applied to assist participants' voluntary intention during repeated, motivating tasks. Recent clinical trials have used advanced controllers that precisely adjust FES to assist functional reach and grasp tasks with FES applied to three muscle groups, showing significant reduction in impairment. The system reported in this paper advances the state-of-the-art by: (1) integrating an FES electrode array on the forearm to assist complex hand and wrist gestures; (2) utilising non-contact depth cameras to accurately record the arm, hand and wrist position in 3D; and (3) employing an interactive touch table to present motivating virtual reality (VR) tasks. The system also uses iterative learning control (ILC), a model-based control strategy which adjusts the applied FES based on the tracking error recorded on previous task attempts. Feasibility of the system has been evaluated in experimental trials with 2 unimpaired participants and clinical trials with 4 hemiparetic, chronic stroke participants. The stroke participants attended 17, 1 hour training sessions in which they performed functional tasks, such as button pressing using the touch table and closing a drawer. Stroke participant results show that the joint angle error norm reduced by an average of 50.3% over 6 attempts at each task when assisted by FES.

Concepts: Clinical trial, Participation, Stroke, Traumatic brain injury, Effectiveness, Task, Virtual reality, Baseball

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In this study, we present a method for measuring functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signal complexity using fuzzy approximate entropy (fApEn) and compare it with the established sample entropy (SampEn). Here we use resting state fMRI dataset of 86 healthy adults (41 males) with age ranging from 19 to 85 years. We expect the complexity of the resting state fMRI signals measured to be consistent with the Goldberger/Lipsitz model for robustness where healthier (younger) and more robust systems exhibit more complexity in their physiological output and system complexity decrease with age. The mean whole brain fApEn demonstrated significant negative correlation (r = -0.472, p<0.001) with age. In comparison, SampEn produced a non-significant negative correlation (r = -0.099, p = 0.367). fApEn also demonstrated a significant (p < 0.05) negative correlation with age regionally (frontal, parietal, limbic, temporal and cerebellum parietal lobes). There was no significant correlation regionally between the SampEn maps and age. These results support the Goldberger/Lipsitz model for robustness and have shown that fApEn is potentially a sensitive new method for the complexity analysis of fMRI data.

Concepts: Brain, Measurement, Brain tumor, Magnetic resonance imaging, Cerebrum, Snake scales, Control theory, Frontal lobe

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Implant loosening - commonly linked with elevated initial micromotion - is the primary indication for total ankle replacement (TAR) revision. Finite element modelling has not been used to assess micromotion of TAR implants; additionally, the biomechanical consequences of TAR malpositioning - previously linked with higher failure rates - remain unexplored. The aim of this study was to estimate implant-bone micromotion and peri-implant bone strains for optimally positioned and malpositioned TAR prostheses, and thereby identify fixation features and malpositioning scenarios increasing the risk of loosening. Finite element models simulating three of the most commonly used TAR devices (BOX(®), Mobility(®) and Salto(®)) implanted into the tibia/talus and subjected to physiological loads were developed. Mobility and Salto demonstrated the largest micromotion of all tibial and talar components, respectively. Any malpositioning of the implant creating a gap between it and the bone resulted in a considerable increase in micromotion and bone strains. It was concluded that better primary stability can be achieved through fixation nearer to the joint line and/or while relying on more than a single peg. Incomplete seating on the bone may result in considerably elevated implant-bone micromotion and bone strains, thereby increasing the risk for TAR failure.

Concepts: Finite element method, Implants, Dental implant, Failure rate, The Implant, Finite element method in structural mechanics, Order theory, Result

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The plantar soft tissue is a highly functional viscoelastic structure involved in transferring load to the human body during walking. A Soft Tissue Response Imaging Device was developed to apply a vertical compression to the plantar soft tissue whilst measuring the mechanical response via a combined load cell and ultrasound imaging arrangement. Accuracy of motion compared to input profiles; validation of the response measured for standard materials in compression; variability of force and displacement measures for consecutive compressive cycles; and implementation in vivo with five healthy participants. Static displacement displayed average error of 0.04 mm (range of 15 mm), and static load displayed average error of 0.15 N (range of 250 N). Validation tests showed acceptable agreement compared to a Houndsfield tensometer for both displacement (CMC > 0.99 RMSE > 0.18 mm) and load (CMC > 0.95 RMSE < 4.86 N). Device motion was highly repeatable for bench-top tests (ICC = 0.99) and participant trials (CMC = 1.00). Soft tissue response was found repeatable for intra (CMC > 0.98) and inter trials (CMC > 0.70). The device has been shown to be capable of implementing complex loading patterns similar to gait, and of capturing the compressive response of the plantar soft tissue for a range of loading conditions in vivo.

Concepts: Participation, Measurement, Tissues, Continuum mechanics, Human body, Materials science, Soft tissue, Design

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Gait is an important clinical assessment tool since changes in gait may reflect changes in general health. Measurement of gait is a complex process which has been restricted to the laboratory until relatively recently. The application of an inexpensive body worn sensor with appropriate gait algorithms (BWM) is an attractive alternative and offers the potential to assess gait in any setting. In this study we investigated the use of a low-cost BWM, compared to laboratory reference using a robust testing protocol in both younger and older adults. We observed that the BWM is a valid tool for estimating total step count and mean spatio-temporal gait characteristics however agreement for variability and asymmetry results was poor. We conducted a detailed investigation to explain the poor agreement between systems and determined it was due to inherent differences between the systems rather than inability of the sensor to measure the gait characteristics. The results highlight caution in the choice of reference system for validation studies. The BWM used in this study has the potential to gather longitudinal (real-world) spatio-temporal gait data that could be readily used in large lifestyle-based intervention studies, but further refinement of the algorithm(s) is required.

Concepts: Algorithm, Evaluation, Measurement, Assessment, Clinical psychology, Cultural studies, Microelectromechanical systems

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Arterial stiffness (AS) is one of the earliest detectable symptoms of cardiovascular diseases and their progression. Current AS measurement methods provide an indirect and qualitative estimation of AS. The purpose of this study is to explore the utilisation of Photoplethysmography (PPG) as a measure of volumetric strain in providing a direct quantification of the Volume Elastic modulus (Ev). An in vitro experimental setup was designed using an arterial model to simulate the human circulation in health (Model 2) and disease (Model 1). Flow, pressure, and PPG signals were recorded continuously under varied conditions of flow dynamics. The obtained Ev values were validated with the gold standard mechanical testing techniques. Values obtained from both methods had no significant difference for both models with a percent error of 0.26% and 1.9% for Model 1 and Model 2, respectively. This study shows that PPG and pressure signals can provide a direct measure of AS in an in vitro setup. With emerging noninvasive pressure measurement methods, this research paves the way for the direct quantification of AS in vivo.

Concepts: In vivo, Thermodynamics, Integral, In vitro, Pressure, Young's modulus, Pressure measurement, Percent difference

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The fretting-corrosion behavior of mixed metal contacts is affected by various mechanical and electrochemical parameters. Crevice conditions at the junction and patient-specific pathologies can affect the pH of the prosthetic environment. The main objective of this study is to understand the effect of pH variation at the stem/head junction of the hip implant under fretting corrosion exposure. We hypothesized that pH will have a significant influence on the fretting-corrosion behavior hip implant modular junctions.

Concepts: Effect, Affect, Implants, In vitro, Hip replacement, Prosthetics, Corrosion, Fretting

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Compressive loading is crucial for tissue regeneration in cartilage; however, the role played by shearing induced from translational or rotational motion of the knee joint has yet to be identified. This study aims at investigating the effects of in vivo like dynamic load-compression integrated with shearing on tissue regeneration, particularly to identify the role played by shearing induced from rotational motion. Tissue samples fabricated from a calcium alginate hydrogel embedded with chondrocytes were subjected to a dynamic tissue culture. Three culturing regimes were included: a static culture control (CON), compression combined with shearing induced from translational motion (CS), and compression combined with shearing induced from both translational and rotational motion (CSR). The results indicate that the CS group has a significantly larger chondrocyte proliferation rate (p < .01), and that the CSR group has no advantages over the CS group. However, the CSR group was found to have a marked influence on the matrix synthesis compared to that of the CS group (p < .01). It can be concluded that shearing from individual joint motions offers a different contribution to the chondrocyte proliferation, matrix synthesis, and phenotype maintenance, and better insight into these individual roles will be necessary for determining the efficacy of in vivo/vitro cartilageous tissue functionalization.

Concepts: Cellular differentiation, Cartilage, Osteoarthritis, Knee, Joint, Group, Autologous chondrocyte implantation, Chondrocyte

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Accurate in-vitro orientation of cadaveric hip joints is challenging due to limited available anatomical landmarks. Published hip joint in-vitro investigations commonly lack details on methods used to achieve reported orientations and the accuracy with which the desired orientation has been achieved. The aim of this study was to develop an accurate method for orienting hip joints with limited anatomical landmarks for in-vitro investigations, and to compare this method against orientation using guiding axes and by visual approximation. The proposed orientation method resulted in orientation angles achieved to within one degree (SD ± 0.58°). For most specimens, orientation using physical tools resulted in errors of ±8° and ±12° in at least one of three orientation angles used to place the femur and pelvis in neutral orientation, respectively. Precision was also worse, with SDs ranging from ±1° to ±5° for orientation angles of femoral specimens and SDs ranging from ±1° to ±8° for pelvic specimens. The error in the orientation angles was worse for orientation by visual approximation and the range of SDs were greater for both the femur and pelvis. Finite element modeling was used to assess the effects of observed orientation errors, on prediction of fracture load. In most cases, the largest error in fracture load among all trials exceeded 30%, relative to a femur oriented without any error in the orientation angles.

Concepts: Finite element method, Hip, Pelvis, Accuracy and precision, Human anatomy, Synovial joint, Iliopsoas, Obturator internus muscle

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Ground reaction forces and moments (GRFs and GRMs) measured from force plates in a gait laboratory are usually used as the input conditions to predict the knee joint forces and moments via musculoskeletal (MSK) multibody dynamics (MBD) model. However, the measurements of the GRFs and GRMs data rely on force plates and sometimes are limited by the difficulty in some patient’s gait patterns (e.g. treadmill gait). In addition, the force plate calibration error may influence the prediction accuracy of the MSK model. In this study, a prediction method of the GRFs and GRMs based on elastic contact element was integrated into a subject-specific MSK MBD modelling framework of total knee arthroplasty (TKA), and the GRFs and GRMs and knee contact forces (KCFs) during walking were predicted simultaneously with reasonable accuracy. The ground reaction forces and moments were predicted with an average root mean square errors (RMSEs) of 0.021 body weight (BW), 0.014 BW and 0.089 BW in the antero-posterior, medio-lateral and vertical directions and 0.005 BW•body height (BH), 0.011 BW•BH, 0.004 BW•BH in the sagittal, frontal and transverse planes, respectively. Meanwhile, the medial, lateral and total tibiofemoral (TF) contact forces were predicted by the developed MSK model with RMSEs of 0.025-0.032 BW, 0.018-0.022 BW, and 0.089-0.132 BW, respectively. The accuracy of the predicted medial TF contact force was improved by 12% using the present method. The proposed method can extend the application of the MSK model of TKA and is valuable for understanding the in vivo knee biomechanics and tribological conditions without the force plate data.

Concepts: Measurement, Prediction, Futurology, Force, Root mean square, Reaction, Ground reaction force, Contact force