HeadChannel is working with Lusstech, FCi Viocare Clinic UK, Teesside University and South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to deliver a disruptive, innovative, high performance, rapid prosthetic socket design technique for clinicians to use for lower limb amputees.
The conventional design and manufacturing process for a prosthetic socket requires a patient to visit a clinic multiple times over one or more weeks. There has been an attempt to eliminate the socket by directly attaching the artificial limb to the residual bone through osseointegration. However, most (>60%, diabetes related) patients with amputations will not be candidates for this procedure. There is a continuing need for an improved prosthetic socket provision technique that addresses the limitations and challenges highlighted above. Socket related problems mainly emanate from the over-reliance on a skilled prosthetist to determine the load bearing capability across the stump using a "touch and feel" technique without quantitative measurements.
The innovation will provide ground breaking performance levels through a novel application of QTSS sensor and other existing technologies (already in use in a variety of industries), and applying these uniquely for health and medical benefit. The project will feature QTSS sensors, biomechanical modelling and CAD/CAM and additive manufacturing technologies. The product will transform the prosthetics market and address the patient needs much faster than currently achievable
The benefits to patients are enormous: the time needed to achieve a good-fit socket will be reduced from weeks to a single day. The amputee will be feeling comfortable when wearing the socket in his/her daily life.
This unique partnership will combine expertise in sensor development, biomedical engineering, software and healthcare to deliver and exploit the project.
The innovation judges were clear:
“The expertise and track record of the project partners demonstrates excellent capability to deliver the project and to exploit the output. Excellent knowledge of the supply chain and how the project relates is demonstrated. The project has access to the optimal talent for the project”.
“As a business, we are proud to be working with a number of commercial and research institutions at the cutting edge of the battle to deliver value to patients, and this grant is testament to the scope of our ambition in the life sciences sector and the value of our technology” said Andrew Green, HeadChannel’s Director.
“In this exciting project, we will be working with our partners to integrate soft tissue assessment, sensor data collection and analysis, interactive 3D morphologic adjustment of a check socket based on the biomechanical analytical model, and the generation of a final definitive socket 3D solid model in a unified package”.
Innovate UK is the UK’s innovation agency. It works with people, companies and partner organizations to find and drive the science and technology innovations that will grow the UK economy.
For further information visit www.innovateuk.gov.uk