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Image: shaking hands of an elderly woman holding a glass of water; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Astrid08

Researchers hopeful they can improve techniques for joint defect treatment

28/09/2017

Different surface topographies and materials provide interesting ways to study cell behaviour and potentially provide novel solutions for treating joint defects. Tissue engineering methods that simulate native cartilage could prove useful to create cartilage implants in the laboratory, according to a doctoral dissertation from Umeå University.
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Image: electrode next to a cent piece; Copyright: Christian Burkert

Stimuli fading away en route to consciousness

26/09/2017

Whether or not we consciously perceive the stimuli projected onto our retina is decided in our brain. A recent study by the University of Bonn shows how some signals dissipate along the processing path to conscious perception. This process begins at rather late stages of signal processing.
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Image: Black-and-white picture, with some structures of the human body highlighted in color; Copyright: ARTORG Center for Biomedical Engineering Research, University of Bern

Cochlear implants: safe procedure thanks to surgical robots

22/05/2017

For many years, cochlear implants have restored a sense of hearing in people with certain types of hearing loss. For surgeons, the implantation requires a precise attention to detail under the microscope. The results for the patients improve significantly with a more precise placement of the electrode array. The use of a surgical robot can increase the accuracy of the procedure.
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Image: Computer-generated graphic showing two hip balls next to each other. Implantation of a sleeve is demonstrated on them; Copyright: revomotion GmbH Köln

Hip joint: sleeve versus endoprosthesis

10/04/2017

People with hip osteoarthritis often suffer from severe pain and only an endoprosthesis implantation can provide relief. This involves a major intervention and long-term rehabilitation because the implant requires the removal of a section of the thigh bone. The "MioHIP" research project looks for an elastic alternative.
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Image: Look over the shoulder of an eye surgeon who is operating at a microscope; Copyright: panthermedia.net/mearicon

Ophthalmology today and tomorrow: surgery and more

01/02/2017

Ophthalmology procedures and eye surgeries have been around since ancient times. Today we can hardly imagine the types of circumstances that surrounded any surgical procedures to our perhaps most important sense organ in those days and later eras. Meanwhile, the present and future of this medical specialty looks all the more promising.
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Image: A 3D stick figure creates a mind map about

A new broom sweeps clean? The new EU Medical Device Regulation

10/10/2016

The year 2016 brings about the new, eagerly anticipated Medical Device Regulation (MDR). The revision needs to now be implemented by all EU member states in the coming years after there have been ongoing deliberations and negotiations since October 2012.
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Photo: Two people with recumbent bikes during a race; Copyright: ETH Zürich/Alessandro Della Bella

Cybathlon: A new type of competition for people with disabilities

01/07/2016

Technical means that lend superpowers to humans are quite normal in comics and movies. In reality, their purpose is much more mundane: They are supposed to help people with disabilities in everyday life. MEDICA MEDICINE + SPORTS CONFERENCE, that takes place at MEDICA in November, is dealing with this topic, too.
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Photo: Stent in human body

Safe or Not Safe? "The AB-DES has not gained market access in countries like Japan or the U.S."

01/05/2016

Antibody-coated, drug-eluting stents (AB-DES) feature an exterior coated with immunosuppressant drugs and an interior that is coated with antibodies to accelerate the adhesion of endothelial cells. In theory, this makes it possible to shorten the duration of therapy with blood thinners, which can mean relief for patients from an already difficult situation.
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Photo: ceramic joints

Knee at your fingertips

22/04/2016

How can you print ceramics, what purpose do they have and how benefits medical technology? Answers provides Dr. Tassilo Moritz from Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS.
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Photo: Printer head over a glass sheet

Melt electrospinning writing: polymer fibers for tissue engineering

01/02/2016

Sometimes, soft tissue in our body needs to be replaced after surgery or an injury. But surgeons are not always able to take tissue from other body parts as a replacement. Then, they need to use implants. The production of soft implants that can constantly endure load and stress like our own tissue is a big challenge for research. Melt electrospinning writing can be a solution.
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Photo: Knee implant

Customized Implants cover bones optimally

22/01/2016

It may fits, but somewhere it still tweaks. Although a suit off the rack serves its purpose, it is still far from being an ideal solution. With a custom made heart it is different. It is similar with implants. Often patients complain about the fact that those implants feel strange. 3D printing is on the best way to change this. Here, the implants are adapted to the carrier.
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Photo: artificial heart valve

Artificial heart valve: "The structure is meant to be broken down again by the body at a later point."

08/01/2016

There are various artificial heart valves available for children, but they have one essential drawback: they need to be replaced because the children are still growing. The artificial valve, on the other hand, remains the same size – and subsequently becomes too small. This is why an artificial heart valve that grows over time would be ideal.
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Photo: white implant lying in petri dish

Repairing the bile duct with bacterial nanocellulose

08/12/2015

The closure apparatus between the gallbladder and small intestine is frequently injured during gallbladder surgeries. So far, however, there has been no surgical option to bridge tissue defects. Now, a novel implant made of bacterial nanocellulose (BNC) could change this. Its nanofiber network makes it extremely robust so that it is able to take on a supporting function.
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Transcatheter Pacing System: The world’s smallest cardiac pacemaker

01/07/2015

In the case of cardiac arrhythmia, the normal heart rate gets out of balance due to various reasons. In some cases, it is necessary to implant a cardiac pacemaker. Just like with any intervention, this type of surgery also involves risks. In the worst-case scenario, this can lead to abnormal wound healing or obliteration of the vascular system.
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Photo: Stents

Stents: Braiding versus cutting

22/05/2015

Braided stents are nothing new in medicine, but their manufacturing process is still time-consuming. This is why Professor Stefan Jockenhövel from the RWTH Aachen University and his team want to make machine production possible.
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Photo: a hand holds a sign for magnesium

Absorbable magnesium scaffold: "The patches need to follow the movement of the cardiac muscle"

08/08/2014

A magnesium implant will soon be available to help patients, who exhibit damage in the high-pressure area of the heart. The implant protects a tissue matrix where new cells that replace the affected tissue are meant to grow. The implant itself is supposed to completely dissolve after several months. MEDICA.de spoke with D. Eng. Thomas Hassel about this exciting project.
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