Read the latest news from the Northwestern University Prosthetics-Orthotics Center. The links below take you to articles where you can learn more about NUPOC and our recent achievements.
- Sean Dineen Wins SPS Scholarship08/10/2018
SPS, the world's largest distributor of P&O products and services, awarded one of three 2018 SPS Student Scholarships to Sean Dineen (MPO 2020).
Qualified scholarship candidates must be enrolled in an accredited P&O graduate program, have a minimum 3.0 GPA and demonstrate leadership. Applicants must submit a recommendation from someone in P&O and an essay about their motivations for entering P&O and perspectives about the future of the profession. Each scholarship receives a $2,500 award.
Mr. Dineen (Little Rock, AR) is enrolled in the MPO distance learning courses and will arrive at NUPOC for his onsite practicum in January 2020. He completed a BS in Interdisciplinary Studies with emphases in biology, health and psychology at Arkansas State University (Jonesboro). NUPOC congratulates Mr. Dineen.
- Matthew Major Presents Work at ASB 201808/10/2018
Matthew Major, PhD, presented a series of research reports at the 42nd Annual Meeting of the American Society of Biomechanics (ASB) held at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, on August 8-11.
From the podium, Dr. Major presented Ability to Predict Perturbation Timing Does Not Impact Center-of-Mass Displacement in Below-Knee Prosthesis Users and Controls authored by Major, Serba and Gordon; and Effects of Wearing and Upper Limb Prosthesis on Standing Balance by Major, Shirvaikar, Stine and Gard.
Dr. Major also presented two posters: 1) Effects of Upper Limb Loss and Prosthesis Use on Standing Balance authored by Major, Shirvaikar, Stine and Gard; and 2) Ability to Predict Perturbation Timing Does Not Impact Center-of-Mass Displacement in Below-Knee Prosthesis Users and Controls authored by Major, Serba and Gordon.
- MPO Student Joe Fairley Coauthors Article08/06/2018
Joseph Fairley, III (MPO 2019), is co-author, with Warder, Coutts, Glisson and Gall, of Examining the Viability of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Three-Dimensionally Printed Prosthetic Feet Created by Composite Filament Fabrication that is published as Epub ahead of print in Prosthetics and Orthotics International. Access the article at DOI: 10.1177/0309364618785726.
Mr. Fairley graduated with a BS in Physics (Siena College, NY) and a MS in Exercise and Sport Science (Merrimack College, MA). Under the auspices of Enable Community Foundation, he spent 8 months in Haiti where he delivered six 3D printers and 13 upper extremity cosmetic and functional 3D printed prostheses. Currently, he is at NUPOC for his supervised, clinical practicum. Mentored by Matthew Major, PhD, his capstone literature review focuses on a mechanical performance and needs assessment of transfemoral and transtibial prosthetic technology in low-income economies.
- NCOPE Travel Award to NUPOC MPO Graduate08/03/2018
Zachary Block, MPO (2018), received the 2018 Larry Lange Travel Fellowship Award. He will use the $2,000 to defray the cost of travel and registration at P&O conferences.
Mr. Block works as a P&O resident at Hangar Clinic (Kansas City), where he coordinates schedules for 5 residents among 12 supervising clinicians. As a graduate student at NUPOC, Steven A. Gard, PhD, mentored his capstone work, “Assessment Criteria for Patellar Tendon Bearing Impressions – An International Delphi Study” and a literature review about consensus techniques used in medicine and allied health fields.
Established in 2007 in memory of Larry Lange, CPO, FAAOP, the Travel Award supports P&O practitioners at the outset of their careers by underwriting opportunities for additional education.
- Prosthetist Carlos Guamán Visits NUPOC08/01/2018
Carlos Guamán, a clinical prosthetist and P&O educator of Cochabamba, Bolivia, and professional colleague of John W. Michael, CPO, spent several days at NUPOC where he attended informative meetings; reviewed P&O instructional content and fabrication processes; and presented talks about prosthetics and orthotics in Bolivia. Although his English is excellent, Mr. Guamán addressed MPO 2019 in Spanish, allowing Natalia Cardona Malavé (MPO 2019) and José Blankenship to interpret for the student audience. Mr. Guamán has a background in mechanical engineering and he applies the biomechanics of gait to teach his patients how to walk with prostheses.
With limited material resources and no public health support for P&O, Mr. Guamán seeks to provide economical clinical care for his clients; also, he pro-actively supplements available training and education to improve standards of local P&O delivery.
Mr. Guamán explained that amputation in Bolivia is due to trauma, cancer, congenital amelia, or diabetes. Medical care in Bolivia does not offer interdisciplinary, team rehabilitation, so after discharge from hospital, patients must find prosthetic care without assistance and pay for their prostheses without insurance. Mr. Guamán creatively improves his patients’ quality of life by re-purposing available and affordable materials and parts, such as tire rubber, balsa wood, leather and swivel casters intended for office chairs. Mr. Guamán described how to minimize costs by using leather and laces to create transtibial sockets for prostheses, “Soak leather until it is malleable and mold it on a positive cast of the residual limb. When the leather dries, it contracts. Tight lacing achieves suspension on the residual limb."
Mr. Guamán’s talks inspired NUPOC students who responded positively to the creative and humanitarian P&O care that Mr. Guamán delivers in Bolivia.
- NUPOC Presents STEM Program: High Tech, Low Tech, the Right Tech07/24/2018
NUPOC hosted the National Student Leadership Conference (NSLC) Engineering Group on July 17, 2018. Participants included 34 students, their 7 science mentors, and NSLC program director Jason Aagenas. MPO 2019 graduate students introduced the NSLC to the NUPOC facilities. Steven A. Gard, PhD, presented Understanding the Biomechanics of Human Gait and Its Application to Prosthetic & Orthotic Devices.
Christopher Robinson, CPO, MBA, MS, ATC, FAAOP(D), presented the interactive modules, The Human Foot-Ankle: Anatomy, Range of Motion (ROM), and Plantar Pressure Measurement Systems. NUPOC appreciates the generous donation of goniometers and pens by Scheck and Siress that supported the hands-on ROM activities. MPO 2019 graduate students Natalia Cardona, Cassidy Rice, Emily Ring, Leah Senator, Abbey Sencyszyn and Hannah Williams helped the NSLC students capture accurate static plantar impressions. Stefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons), helped the NSLC students interpret their plantar impressions.
Building on information presented in Dr. Gard’s foundational lecture about human gait, the NSLC visited the Jesse Brown VAMC Motion Analysis Research Laboratory, where Rebecca Stine, MS, presented information about digital human motion capture and plantar pressure. Jeff Linton, CPO, assisted Ms. Stine by walking on force plates and demonstrating human gait and motion analysis. Mr. Linton also answered NSLC students’ questions about his experiences living with amputations and using prostheses.
During the final module, Yeongchi Wu, MD, presented Dilatancy Casting, an Innovative, Sustainable and Translational Biotechnology. Dr. Wu introduced several innovative P&O techniques and emphasized dilatancy casting as a better, cheaper, faster and greener technology.
R. J. Garrick, PhD, developed and moderated this STEM program.
NUPOC appreciates Scheck & Siress for supporting this STEM program.
- Stefania Fatone Delivers Keynote at 25th Scientific Meeting of the Japanese Academy of Prosthetists and Orthotists07/22/2018
Stefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons), was invited keynote speaker at the 25th Scientific Meeting of the Japanese Academy of Prosthetists and Orthotists held July 21-22, 2018, in Sapporo, Japan. Dr. Fatone presented The Northwestern University Flexible Sub-Ischial Vacuum (NU-FlexSIV) Socket: Development, Research and Dissemination to a large, interested audience. In the past year, the NU-FlexSIV Socket has attracted great interest in Japan with three sold out workshops held at Kobe College of Medical Welfare and a fourth to be held in January 2019.
Satoshi Kojima, conference program chair, and Shin Sasaki, director of the 4-year P&O course at Kobe College of Medical Welfare (Sanda), invited Dr. Fatone to present her work on the NU-FlexSIV Socket. Reflecting the keen national interest in the NU-FlexSIV Socket, six Japanese prosthetists also presented talks about their experiences fitting the NU-FlexSIV Socket.
In the exhibition hall, the Kobe College of Medical Welfare booth featured the NU-FlexSIV Socket and registered prosthetists for future NU-FlexSIV workshops. Also, two of the first transfemoral amputees in Japan who selectively wear the NU-FlexSIV Socket demonstrated and discussed their experiences with the socket.
Other notable international presenters at the JAPO meeting included Dr. M. S. Wong, Hong Kong Polytechnic, who discussed his research on the orthotic management of scoliosis; and British photographer Giles Duley, a triple amputee due to a landmine, who spoke about documenting the experiences of people in conflict zones.
- Lenin Delsol Exhibit Opens at NUPOC07/13/2018
At NUPOC, science, technology, and art intersect. In recognition of the artistry that is vital to prosthetics and orthotics, NUPOC is delighted to announce the installation and exhibition of oil and watercolor paintings by Lenin Delsol.
Mr. Delsol creatively interprets his figures in a narrative context. Recognized for his attention to draftsmanship and color, he captures his subjects’ features, while also conveying the individuality of their mood and character. In each painting, his use of color and light transforms the human figure into a nearly palpable, sentient person.
Born and raised in England, Mr. Delsol and his family moved to Chicago in 1978. As a student at the American Academy of Art (Chicago), Mr. Delsol systematically refined his drawing skills, working first as a comic book artist and illustrator, and later founding his own commercial art studio. Mr. Delsol developed new artistic directions studying under the tutelage of artists Steven Assael, David Leffel, Sherrie McGraw, Burton Silverman, Mary Whyte and Bo Zhang.
Mr. Delsol is a member of the Oil Painters of America (OPA) and the Portrait Society of America. OPA has selected his work for exhibit at national and regional juried art exhibitions. The National Oil & Acrylic Painters’ Society recognized Mr. Delsol with an Award of Excellence (2015) for his painting, Over the Shoulder, in the online, juried international exhibition. Mr. Delsol instructs and paints at the Palette and Chisel (Chicago), where he serves on the Board of Directors. Approachable and generous, Mr. Delsol supports the development of other artists and often complies with requests to critique works and monitor open studios.
Artists and Certified Prosthetist-Orthotists (CPO) cultivate similar skills. A maxim holds that a good prosthetist-orthotist needs the triad of “head, heart, and hands”. Superior cognitive ability, compassion, and hand skills enable CPOs to serve their patients well. As scientists and clinicians, CPOs are rigorously trained in human anatomy, biomechanics, behavioral sciences, professional issues, practice management, and independent research. They also employ creative artistry that bridges science and technology to fit and fabricate functional, comfortable, wearable prostheses and orthoses. Read more about how Art and Science Intersect at the NUPOC Gallery.
NUPOC appreciates Lenin Delsol and the Palette and Chisel Academy of Fine Arts (Chicago) for making this exhibit possible.
- Fatone Contributes to UC Student-Led Design Project07/12/2018
Stefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons), responded to a request from her former mentee, Angelika Zissimopoulos, PhD, who taught a design engineering class at the University of Chicago. A student team opted to design and improve a tourniquet model in association with Stop the Bleed, a national initiative to educate and empower citizens to reduce mortality from exsanguination among traumatically injured persons. To demonstrate correct tourniquet use, a design goal was to develop a realistic model limb with improved biomimetic compliance and resistance.
At NUPOC, Dr. Fatone cast a partial leg of a UC student. The UC student team carried a plaster negative mold to their campus where they fabricated an improved partial leg model using high density foam, Soma Foama® and Dragon Skin®, a high performance silicone rubber. After compression with a tourniquet, the material rebounds to its original form without rupture or distortion. Photo 1 shows the interior structure of the project model. Photo 2 compares the improved, biomimetic leg model to the original leg model that consists of a noncompliant, plastic cylinder. The students filmed a video about their improved model.
Dr. Zissimopoulos directs initiatives that support STEM teaching and learning at the University of Chicago and teaches an undergraduate course. She completed her doctorate in Biomedical Engineering at Northwestern University, where she conducted research under the mentorship of Dr. Fatone and Steven A. Gard, PhD.
- NUPOC Summer Intern, Gila Baer07/12/2018
NUPOC welcomes summer intern Gila Baer, who is assisting Principal Investigator Stefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons), on the DOD-funded research project No Longer Smooth: Introducing Striations into Prosthetic Socket Construction to Improve Suspension, Rotation, Fit and Comfort. Project manager Julia Quinlan, PhD, who has guided Ms. Baer in data collection derived from tensile and coefficient of friction testing, said, “Gila has been very helpful and contributed substantively to this project. She immediately grasps the concepts and it is a great pleasure to work with her.”
Ms. Baer completed two years of study in engineering sciences at Emory University (Atlanta) and now is a rising senior at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) where she majors in biomedical engineering with a neural specialization and minors in circuits and systems. At IIT she is a Dean’s List student and received a Dean’s Choice Award (2017). After graduation, she would like to pursue a master’s degree in prosthetics and orthotics.
At Emory University Ms. Baer worked as an undergraduate research assistant at the INSPIRE lab where she recruited and scheduled research subjects, collected and analyzed data, and wrote results. Her participation garnered co-authorship on several abstracts, posters and a peer-reviewed article. In addition to her NUPOC internship, she also tutors students for ACT, PSAT, physics, and software use.
As a high school student, she volunteered at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, where she interacted with patients in occupational and physical therapy; and participated in the Take Your Child to Work Day and Caring for Kids camp. We appreciate Ms. Baer for volunteering as a NUPOC summer intern from May 8 through August 2.
The Childress Fund
Established with a generous gift from the Childress family, the Childress Fund accepts donations that help to continue Dudley Childress' work by stimulating interest in rehabilitation engineering for Prosthetics-Orthotics.
The Childress Fund benefits all who are interested in P&O and especially individuals who live with physical impairments. We invite you to be part of this ongoing effort by giving generously to the Dudley S. Childress, PhD, Research and Education Fund.