Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Northwestern University Prosthetics-Orthotics Center


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.

  • Scheck and Siress Prosthetics Awards Financial Support for Research at NUPOC

    Stefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons)Scheck & Siress Prosthetics, Inc. is partnering with the Northwestern University Prosthetics-Orthotics Center (NUPOC) to fund research in prosthetics and orthotics (P&O). Stefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons), Professor of PMR and Principal Investigator for multiple P&O research projects at NUPOC, will direct the research. She expressed her appreciation for Scheck & Siress’ generous support. “I am delighted and very grateful to receive Scheck & Siress' support for my P&O research endeavors. My previous and ongoing collaborations with Scheck & Siress have been extremely important to our ability to conduct clinically relevant research that positively impacts the delivery of prosthetic and orthotic care. This additional support from Scheck & Siress will enable me to grow these efforts.”

    Through the years, Scheck & Siress has successfully partnered with NUPOC to conduct P&O research and educational programs. Scheck & Siress President and CEO, Michael Oros, CPO/L, FAAOP, elaborated on the corporate decision to provide financial resources for P&O research at NUPOC. “This gift represents our recognition of the fine work led by Dr. Fatone and her team at NUPOC and Scheck & Siress’ support of clinical research that will improve the quality of patient care that we deliver.”

    A leader in P&O care, Scheck & Siress has improved and restored patients’ mobility since 1953. With 15 locations and more than 50 American Board Certified practitioners, Scheck & Siress provides P&O care throughout Chicago & northwest Indiana. 

    NUPOC appreciates Scheck and Siress for their generosity in supporting P&O research.

  • NUPOC Researchers to Present Talks at 2018 Scheck Fest

    On April 27, 2018, NUPOC researchers Stefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons), Matthew Major, PhD, and Julia Quinlan, PhD will present their research to prosthetist-orthotists attending Scheck Fest, the annual in-house educational training program at Scheck & Siress Prosthetics, Inc.

    • Dr. Fatone, Ryan Caldwell, CP, and John Angelico, CP will present Evaluation of the NU-FlexSIV Socket for Persons with Transfemoral Amputation: Interim Results & Clinical Commentary.
    • Dr. Fatone will present Informing Decisions about Dysvascular Partial Foot Amputation Using a Shared Decision-Making Approach.
    • Dr. Quinlan will present The Effect of Prosthetic Socket Texturing on Suspension.
    • Dr. Major will present How Do Transtibial Prosthesis Users Prepare for a Balance Disturbance during Walking?
  • Fatone Talks to Research Administrators about P&O Research

    Dr. Fatone presents insight talk to FSM Research Administration Team.

    Dr. Fatone presents insight talk to FSM Research Administration TeamStefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons), presented an overview about NU-FlexSIV Socket research to a group of 13 research administrators. The Research Administration Services Team is led by Director Cyndie Shannon-Hutchison. Jyrell Keys is the research administrator assigned to Dr. Fatone. Monthly, the research administrators attend insight talks to learn about the research that is funded with their administrative support.

    Dr. Fatone presented an informative, visual presentation about the development and research outcomes of the NU-FlexSIV Socket, and the administrators responded with insightful questions. Dr. Fatone illustrated the stages of the NU-FlexSIV Socket research, including socket goals, initial concept, research collaborations with engineers, prosthetists and Department of Defense personnel; iterative testing, modifications and improvements; dissemination through presentations and publications; hands-on training of USA and foreign prosthetists; and the socket’s current popularity among clients with transfemoral amputation.

    A sample of the research administrators’ comments indicate that they highly evaluated the talk. “Thank you for such an interesting and educational lecture.” “We learned a lot about your research.” “Your work is very interesting and seems to be life changing for patients.”

  • NUPOC Researchers Present at 2018 Lewis Landsberg Research Day

    NUPOC researchers Julia Quinlan, PhD, Tara Shirvaikar, and J. Chad Duncan, CPO, PhD, CRC, presented posters at the 14th Annual Lewis Landsberg Research Day on April 5, 2018.

    Poster coauthors Ms. Yohay, Dr. Quinlan and Dr. Fatone at 2018 Landsberg Research Day.Dr. Quinlan (coauthors L Tran, J Yohay, B Poziembo, S Fatone) presented The Effect of Prosthetic Socket Texturing on Socket Suspension Using Mechanical Loading. The poster examines whether textured sockets can benefit individuals with transtibial amputation by decreasing undesirable relative motion between the prosthetic socket and the residual limb. Learn more about this research at No Longer Smooth: Introducing Striations into Prosthetic Socket Construction to Improve Suspension, Rotation, Fit and Comfort, PI Stefania Fatone, PhD. 

    Ms. Shirvaikar at 2018 Landsberg Research Day.Ms. Shirvaikar (coauthors M Major, R Stine, S Gard) presented Effects of Wearing an Upper Limb Prosthesis on Standing Balance. The poster shows that use of an upper limb prosthesis has no consistent effect on limb loading symmetry, but appears to increase COP excursion, which is associated with fall likelihood in the elderly. Learn more about this research at Fall Risk and Prosthetic Influence on Gait Biomechanics in Upper Limb Amputees, PIs Matthew Major, PhD, and Steven A. Gard, PhD.

    Dr. Duncan (coauthors M Cavanaugh, K Healy and L Lang) presented Inter-professional Practice and Education (IPE) Creating a Stronger Understanding of Professions. The poster investigates areas of student learning when students from the NUPOC and the Physician Assistant Program collaborate to improve health outcomes.

  • NUPOC Presents Comprehensive Course for Physicians and Therapists

    Fifty-two physicians and therapists attended Lower and Upper Limb Orthotics and Prosthetics for Physicians and Therapists, NUPOC’s 4-day continuing education course presented March 27-30. The intensive course attracted 29 medical doctors, 7 doctors of osteopathic medicine, 14 physical therapists, 1 occupational therapist, and 1 PhD. Registrants attended from 16 US states coast-to-coast and the District of Columbia, and from Australia, Canada and Ecuador.

    Chris Robinson developed and moderated the Continuing Education Course for Physicians & Therapists

    The four-day program combined didactic lectures and live patient demonstrations that illustrated fundamental principles of prosthetic and orthotic (P&O) management of pre- and post-amputation care, biomechanics of human locomotion, prosthetic management of upper limb, partial foot, transtibial, transfemoral and hip disarticulation, orthotic management of knee, ankle, foot, and spine. 

    Pre-eminent P&O educators, clinicians, and researchers presented intensive modules. NUPOC specialists who presented sessions were course developer and moderator Christopher Robinson, MS, MBA, CPO, ATC, FAAOP(D), Martin Buckner, CPO, Robert Lipschutz, CP, and Bryan Malas, CO, MHPE. Visiting contributing faculty were Karen Bovid, MD, Christian Ertl, MD, Christopher Reger, MD, Katherine Martinez, PT, PhD, MA, NCS,  David Rotter, CPO, Nicole Soltys, CP, David Speers, CPO, and Kristi Turner, OTR.

    Mr. Robinson develops and manages this academic program with the support of others at NUPOC. Annually, this course earns high marks from attendee evaluations. 

  • Steven A. Gard Featured in O&P Almanac

    Principal Investigator Steven A. Gard, PhD, and his career contributions are spotlighted in “A Perfect Blend of Medicine and Engineering” (O&P Almanac, March 2018:37-41). Through his research initiatives and scientific publications about prosthetic feet, knees, shock-absorbing components, sockets, liners, ankle-foot orthoses, knee-ankle-foot orthoses and reciprocating gait orthoses, Dr. Gard has advanced new knowledge and contributed to evidence-based clinical delivery of Prosthetics and Orthotics (P&O).

    Dr. Gard investigates and quantifies the ways that prosthetic and orthotic devices affect the biomechanics of gait. In addition to his research projects, Dr. Gard also contributes to P&O through the mentorship of biomedical engineering students and students in the Master’s of Prosthetics and Orthotics program. He also exerts worldwide P&O influence through his service on editorial boards. Currently, he is editor-in-chief at the Journal of Prosthetics and Orthotics (JPO).

  • 2018 NUPOC Biannual Research Symposium

    Yeongchi Wu, MD (NUPOC), demonstrates dilatancy technology for Robert Helbing, CPO (Germany) 2018 German-speaking Travel Fellows with NUPOC researchers 

    Dr. Ernst (Germany) discussing research interests with Dr. Quinlan (NUPOC)The 2018 NUPOC Biannual Research Symposium featured a day of presentations by NUPOC researchers and four Initiative ’93 Technical Orthopedics Travel Fellows from Germany and Austria. From Germany were Jennifer Ernst, MD (Restoring Dorsiflexion in Spastic Drop Foot-Interdisciplinary Treatment Concepts); Daiwei Yao, MD (Neurostimulation: A Treatment Option for Drop Foot); Robert Helbing, CPO Cat. 1 (How Much Socket Is Necessary?); and from Austria was Andreas Kranzl, PhD (Results of Gait Analysis, Including the Oxford Foot Model in Children with Clubfoot Treated with the Ponseti Method, 3-D Gait Analysis, Pressure Distribution). 

    Julia Quinlan, PhD Steven Gard, PhD, presents and overview of NUPOC research 

    Matthew Major, PhD Ryan Caldwell, CP  

    Stefania Fataone, PhD, BPO(Hons)NUPOC researchers presented their current work: Matthew Major, PhD (Proactive Locomotor Adjustments Are Specific to Perturbation Uncertainty in Below-Knee Prosthesis Users); Stefania Fatone, PhD, (Evaluation of the NU-FlexSIV Socket for Persons with Transfemoral Amputation: Interim Results); Julia Quinlan, PhD (Mechanical Testing of Textured Prosthetic Sockets Provides Insight on Improving Suspension); Ryan Caldwell, CP, with demonstrator Jessica Yohay, BS (Development of a Prototype Residual Limb Monitoring System); and Yeongchi Wu, MD, with demonstrator Jeff Linton, CPO (Dilatancy Technology for P&O). R. J. Garrick, PhD, and Steven A. Gard, PhD, developed and moderated this Symposium. 

    Andreas Kranzl, PhD  Daiwei Yao, MD  

    Robert Helbing, CPO Cat. 1In the German-speaking countries, Technical Orthopedics is a comprehensive discipline that includes Orthopedic Surgery, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Physical Therapy, and Prosthetics & Orthotics. Inspiration for the Travel Fellowship emerged during the 1992 International Society of Prosthetics and Orthotics (ISPO) World Congress (Chicago) chaired by Dudley Childress, PhD. 

    To fulfill the mission of promoting and strengthening orthopedic skills among German-speaking Technical Orthopedics specialists, the 2-year competitive Fellowship offers orthopedic training, educational courses and information exchange; 4 to 6 weeks of travel to medical and research centers in North America; and dissemination of new information to specialists in the home countries. NUPOC was delighted to welcome the 11th group of Fellows and looks forward to continuing this exchange in coming years.

  • NUPOC Lab Tour at 2018 SWE Career Day for Girls

    Prosthetics & Orthotics generated keen interest at SWE Career Day for Girls   Prosthetics & Orthotics generated keen interest at Career Day for Girls   At SWE Career Day for Girls, a young scientist examines a terminal device.

    Dr. Duncan demonstrated the knee in a lower limb prosthesisJ. Chad Duncan, PhD, CPO, CRC, and R. J. Garrick, PhD, represented NUPOC at the 47th Annual Career Day for Girls sponsored by the Northwestern University student chapter of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science. The 2018 Career Day theme is Prototype Your Passion!

    Dr. Duncan presented three consecutive virtual lab tours of NUPOC with interactive demonstrations of upper and lower limb prosthetic devices. Dr. Duncan discussed function of upper and lower limb prostheses. Dr. Garrick helped each student experience a simulated upper limb prosthesis. Each student operated a split hook terminal device using a body-powered, cable-operated simulator. Junior high and high school students learned about careers in biomedical engineering with focus on rehabilitation engineering and prosthetics and orthotics.

    Ellen A. Worsdall, PhD, Assistant Dean, McCormick School of Engineering & Applied Sciences, and SWE manage this interactive program. R. J. Garrick, PhD, and J. Chad Duncan, PhD, developed the NUPOC virtual lab session. NUPOC appreciates Lyndsay Whalen, OT, at Ossur/Touch Bionics for the loan of the i-limb Touch Bionics simulator hand. 


  • NUPOC Posters at 2018 Lewis Landsberg Research Day

    NUPOC researchers Julia Quinlan, PhD, and Tara Shirvaikar will present their posters at the 14th Annual Lewis Landsberg Research Day on April 5, 2018

    Dr. Quinlan’s accepted abstract examines whether textured sockets can benefit individuals with transtibial amputation by decreasing undesirable relative motion between the prosthetic socket and the residual limb. Initial longitudinal testing demonstrated that textured sockets affect socket suspension. Bench testing sockets achieves pre-clinical research about using textured sockets to improve prosthetic suspension. The optimal texture pattern for clinical use should minimize displacements in both the longitudinal and rotational directions, minimize wear on the liner and provide durability. Additional rotational testing and assessment of durability will determine whether textured sockets are ready to test on human subjects. Learn more about this project at No Longer Smooth: Introducing Striations into Prosthetic Socket Construction to Improve Suspension, Rotation, Fit and Comfort, PI Stefania Fatone, PhD.  

    Ms. Shirvaikar’s accepted abstract finds that use of an upper limb prosthesis has no consistent effect on limb loading symmetry but appears to increase COP excursion. An increase in COP excursion indicates greater body center-of-mass motion and additional need for postural control. Greater COP excursion has demonstrated relationships with fall likelihood in the elderly; however, no difference exists in COP parameters between fallers and non-fallers. Further research is needed to identify the clinical meaning of these findings. Learn more about this project at Fall Risk and Prosthetic Influence on Gait Biomechanics in Upper Limb Amputees, PIs Matthew Major, PhD, and Steven A. Gard, PhD. 

  • Fatone and Caldwell Teach Second NU-FlexSIV Socket Course in Japan

    Fatone and Caldwell presented a 2nd NU-FlexSIV Socket Course (Sanda, Japan)

    Stefania Fatone, PhD, BPO(Hons), and Ryan Caldwell, CP, returned by invitation to the Kobe College of Medical Welfare (Sanda, Japan) to teach a second NU-FlexSIV Socket Course on March 9-11, 2018. In this course, two prosthetists from Sri Lanka joined 13 prosthetists and 10 patient models from Japan. In August 2017, Fatone and Caldwell presented the first NU-FlexSIV Socket Course in Japan to enthusiastic response.

    Faculty and students of the Prosthetic and Orthotic Program at Kobe College facilitated course logistics and communications. In particular, the presenters appreciate Mr. Shin Sasaki and Mr. Kenta Tonai who were indispensable in translating course materials and interpreting lectures and interactions with participants.

    Due to keen interest in the NU-FlexSIV Socket course, Fatone and Caldwell have scheduled a third course in July 2018, following the Japanese Association for Prosthetics and Orthotics (JAPO) Annual Meeting, where Dr. Fatone is an invited keynote speaker.

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.