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17 April 2013 Monitoring the fracture healing of an internally fixated pelvis using vibration analysis
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Patients who suffer from unstable pelvic fractures are usually implanted with internal fixations which provide structural rigidity as well as allow sufficient contact between fracture edges for healing to occur. A 12 week post-operative period of immobility is typically enforced on the patient to ensure this healing process is not hindered. This extended period of restricted movement could cause muscle wastage which results in additional rehabilitation time. It is therefore highly beneficial to develop a non-invasive method which can be used in-situ to monitor the healing of the pelvis in hopes of allowing patients to undertake earlier weight bearing activities and reduce muscle degradation. This paper studies the dynamic behaviour of a fixated synthetic pelvis by monitoring its response over varying stages of stiffness recovery. The synthetic pelvis was cut at the sacrum araldite was applied over the cut site and allowed to cure over a one hour period. Excitation signals were introduced to the synthetic structure by means a shaker using the fixation screws as wave guides. Transfer functions obtained from an array of sensors bonded to the pelvis and the fixation demonstrate significant changes occurring over the stiffness recovery period due to glue curing. If these changes can be quantified, future research could lead to the development of smart fixations which can monitor the state of healing in the pelvis.
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Lydia C. Y. Wong, Wing K. Chiu, Matthias Russ, and Susan Liew "Monitoring the fracture healing of an internally fixated pelvis using vibration analysis", Proc. SPIE 8695, Health Monitoring of Structural and Biological Systems 2013, 869534 (17 April 2013);

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