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Biomechanical diagnostic, pre-planning and outcome tools to improve musculoskeletal surgery (BioMechTools)
Start date: May 1, 2013, End date: Apr 30, 2018 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The aetiology of many musculoskeletal (MS) diseases is related to biomechanical factors. However, the tools to assess the biomechanical condition of patients used by clinicians and researchers are often crude and subjective leading to non-optimal patient analyses and care. In this project innovations related to imaging, sensor technology and biomechanical modelling are utilized to generate versatile, accurate and objective methods to quantify the (pathological) MS condition of the lower extremity of patients in a unique manner. The project will produce advanced diagnostic, pre-planning and outcome tools which allow clinicians and researchers for detailed biomechanical analysis about abnormal tissue deformations, pathological loading of the joints, abnormal stresses in the hard and soft tissues, and aberrant joint kinematics.The key objectives of this proposal are:1) Develop and validate image-based 3-D volumetric elastographic diagnostic methods that can quantify normal and pathological conditions under dynamic loading and which can be linked to biomechanical modelling tools.2) Create an ultrasound (US)-based system to assess internal joint kinematics which can be used as a diagnostic tool for clinicians and researchers and is a validation tool for biomechanical modelling.3) Generate and validate an ambulant functional (force and kinematic) diagnostic system which is easy to use and which can be used to provide input data for biomechanical models.4) Create and validate a new modelling approach that integrates muscle-models with finite element models at a highly personalized level.5) Generate biomechanical models which have personalized mechanical properties of the hard and soft tissues.6) Demonstrate the applicability of the personalized diagnostic and pre-planning platform by application to healthy individuals and patient subjects.Support from the ERC will open new research fields related to biomechanical patient assessment and modeling of MS pathologies.
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