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INNOVATION FOR INDEPENDENCE

ISSUE 65 February/March 09 £6.95

Stairclimbing puts most strain on hips By Dominic Musgrave

second time.

A TEAM of researchers in Portsmouth have found that walking up and down stairs puts the most strain on artificial hips compared with other routine activities such as walking.

“Our results are useful for orthopaedic surgeons and bone cement manufacturers, as both can now focus on improving the bonding between bone and cement, through improving surgical techniques and developing new formula for bone cements,” said Jie.

They also found that body weight is an important factor in determining the survival of cemented hip replacements. The findings could lead to improvements in the cemented hip replacements so that they last longer, and to new advice given to patients on how to reduce the strain on their new joint by lifestyle changes. The team at the University of Portsmouth, led by professor Jie Tong in the department of mechanical and design engineering, and Gavin Hussell, consultant surgeon at Queen Alexandra hospital in Cosham, were funded over two years by the Arthritis Research Campaign to find out why the artificial sockets used in cemented hip replacement operations came loose, leading to the need for the joint to be revised, that is replaced for a

“Overall improvements in cemented fixation will drive the revision rate down, which will benefit both the patients and the health service.” The team used a specially designed hip simulator to test the cemented implants under realistic loading conditions such as going up and down stairs, walking and a series of routine activities. They also used CT scanning and tested the outcomes on computer models in order to validate their findings. The team discovered that in hip joint replacements that come loose, there is a mechanical failure at the point where the bone and the cement connect, known as the bone-cement interface.

Jason Bradbury from Channel Five’s Gadget Show presented the creators of a prosthetic limb which fuses directly with a person’s own skin and bone with a top award. The ITAP (Intraosseous Transcutaneous Amputation Prosthesis), a British creation developed by the University College London and medical devices company Stanmore Implants, was named knowledge transfer champion at the inaugural London Knowledge Transfer Awards.


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Friends set up online facility for physios THREE friends who met at school in Brighton have set up a new online facility for physiotherapists. The site at www.pacpacs.com enables physios to create personalised exercise routines, keep track of a patient’s history, produce exercise handouts and compose a set of exercises with video instructions from a variety of angles for clients. It was set up by sports therapist Paul McKeown, who came up with the idea after noticing there was nothing similar available on the market.

“I noticed that there was nothing like this available on the web and nothing that gave video explanations,” he said. “I kept it to myself at first and then we trialled it and received some positive feedback so went with it. “I started to think who I knew who could help me take this forward and remembered web designer Chris (Farmiloe) from school. We sat in a pub and chatted about who else we knew that could help us to pull this off and turn it into a business and came up with a videographer that

we also knew called Jon Tully.” The company launched at the recent CSP Congress in Manchester, and Paul says he has big plans for the company in the future. “The great thing about the website is that we can just keep adding to it so it will never be finished,” he added. “We are going to put falls exercises on their next, and after that is physios think of something they would like to go on there if they get in contact we will add it. The only thing stopping us is time.”

Firm lends a hand A NORTH EAST taxi firm is searching for the owner of an abandoned false arm. The prosthetic limb was discovered by a taxi driver when he checked the back of his cab after a late-night shift. The company, which operates from Newcastle Central Station, said it had not been able to identify the owner, and appealed for information. Contracts manager Jimmy Blake said: “We found all manner or things in the back of our cabs over the years. We've even had people leave their children in the back seat but this one was completely new to us.”

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Contacts

Health minister opens £1.5m centre A TOP Government minister paid a flying visit to York to officially open a £1.5 million occupational health and wellbeing centre.

Business development manager Francis Riley (right) demonstrates the spirometry testing equipment which measures lung capacity for small business client Jo Clark from Kerry Sweet Ingredients and health secretary Alan Johnson.

NHS staff at York Hospital, together with more than 14,000 workers from 113 local businesses, are already benefiting from the state-of-the-art facilities, which have been up and running since September. Secretary of state for health Alan Johnson unveiled a plaque at the centre in Centurion Park, before being taken on a tour of the site. “The benefits of promoting good health at work – to both employees and employers – are well recognised,” said Andrew Gilbey, assistant director of occupational health for York Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. “By offering a onestop shop of health and wellbeing support for smaller businesses and other employers, our centre can help both staff and employers.” The centre was funded thanks to a £1.3million grant from the

Department of Health and another £190,000 from York Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. As well as occupational health services, it offers a range of services, including physiotherapy, chiropractic, podiatry and complementary therapies such as aromatherapy and reflexology. It has been designated as an

innovation site by NHS Plus – a Department of Health-funded project aimed at increasing the provision and quality of health and wellbeing services to smaller businesses. York Hospital was one of only five hospital trusts in the country to be awarded the Government grant – and the only one north of Cambridge.

Editorial Andrew Harrod Group Editor editorial@assistivetechnologies.co.uk Dominic Musgrave Healthcare Editor Email: dm@whpl.net Tel: 01226 734407 Sales Hayley Doig Email: hd@whpl.net Tel: 01226 734412

Sales representative Fax: 01226 734478

Circulation circulation@wharncliffepublishing.co.uk 24 hour hotline: 01226 734695 Design/Production Judith Halkerston Group Deputy Editor Email: jhalkerston@whpl.net Stewart Holt Studio Manager Email: sth@whpl.net Sales and Marketing Director Tony Barry Email: tb@whpl.net Product manager Jackie Brook Email: jb@whpl.net Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of all contents, the publishers do not accept liability for any error, printed or otherwise, that may occur.

www.assistivetechnologies.co.uk

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Jenny bids to ease the pain NEWS

By Dominic Musgrave AN occupational therapist from Bath is pioneering a new treatment for people with agonising pain. Jenny Lewis believes she can revolutionise treatment of a condition that leaves patients in so much pain they would rather cut off their arm or leg than endure the constant agony. One in every 4,000 people in the UK suffers from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), which can be triggered after a small injury and often leaves patients in significant physical torment. Jenny, who is based at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases (RNHD), has secured a fellowship at the McGill University in Canada, using brain imaging to investigate the phenomenon known as body perception disturbance. She came up with the idea for the study after noticing how patients behave in an unusual way towards their painful limb. "While treating patients with CRPS I noticed that rather than protect

Jenny Lewis

and look after their painful limb as you might expect, patients often ignored it," she added. “They had a distorted perception of their limb and when asked to close their eyes and describe it, they would leave out whole anatomical sections. “They would express feelings of loathing towards it, often behaving as if it was not part of their body.

Picture: The Western Daily Press

Some even had a desperate desire to amputate it.” Jenny plans to use magnetic resonance imaging to explore possible changes in the region of the brain responsible for touch sensation. She hopes to use this as evidence of changes in the way that the brain represents the limb where chronic pain is felt, and will

compare this brain activity to how patients describe their body perception disturbance to establish whether there is a relationship between the two. “A better understanding of this relationship will inform treatment and contribute to improving rehabilitation outcomes for patients with CRPS and other chronic pain conditions," she added.

Generations to unite to exercise BRIGHTON University students are to team up with older people in Eastbourne to help them exercise and be creative. The project, launched in January, will include students of physiotherapy, occupational health and podiatry and is aimed at bringing the generations together. “I think the benefits of intergenerational activities have been shown over a number of projects that we have done,” said project manager, professor Ann Moore. “The benefits are so strong in terms of what the older people will learn from the students but also what the students learn from older people, not just skills but how to deal appropriately with older people and understand their values.”

Older people who join will be given the opportunity to take part in tai chi or croquet classes and physiotherapy undergraduates will work with them on fitness plans tailored to the exercise they would like to, and feel they can manage. Occupational therapy students will help them be creative and share skills like pottery and cooking, while those studying podiatry will teach them how to look after their feet. Eastbourne MP Nigel Waterson is a supporter of the university's Wellbeing, Health and Occupation for Older People group project. He said: “I was fascinated to hear about all the initiatives designed to improve wellbeing amongst older people. This ties in very well with my own role as shadow minister for older people.”

New service centre opens MOUNTWAY has opened a new service centre in America to offer technical support and customer service for its customers. They will now have quicker responses as they are not reliant on time differences between America and the UK, minimising delays. The centre was opened as a joint venture with RoMedic – part of the Handicare Group. International sales and marketing 4

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manager Novia Imm said: “The opening of a new service centre in North America is another feat Mountway has achieved to consolidate its position as a global manufacturer and distributor. We at Mountway are proud of where we’ve come from and where we are going. Mountway has certainly come a long way from its humble beginnings and is respected in countries across the world.”


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Breakthrough with amputees in research

Knee braces support charity skier

SCIENTISTS at the Karolinska Institute and Lund University in Sweden have successfully induced people with an amputated arm to experience a prosthetic rubber hand.

DJO UK provided the knee braces for a 53-year-old man who skied more than 480 kilometres for two cancer charities. After a diagnosis of the preleukaemic bone marrow condition Myelodysplasia, Mike Evans was forced to retire from his teaching job and his many involvements in outdoor education. After he had beaten the illness and infections which left him more tired and able to achieve less as he tried to stay fit, he set himself the challenge of raising £5,000 for Cancer Research and St Catherine’s Hospice. “For me a big problem is the state of my knees,” said Mike. “DonJoy braces have, for years, come with me on every trip, giving that extra bit of stability after years of abuse climbing, playing sport and skiing. As my knees have different problems, I need a different brace for each. When I went for my fitting, they couldn’t believe how old my braces were – they were completely worn out and technically very dated.” He was accompanied on the trip by his nephew, a ski instructor.

It is believed the results could lead to the development of a new type of touch-sensitive prosthetic hand. The illusion of having a rubber hand was achieved by the scientists by touching the stump of the amputated arm out of sight of the subject while simultaneously touching the rubber hand in full view of the same subject. This created the illusion that the sensory input was coming from the prosthetic hand rather than from the stump, and that the hand belonged to the subject’s own body. “We’ll now be looking into the possibilities of developing a prosthetic hand that can register touch and stimulate the stump to which it’s attached,” said Henrik Ehrsson, one of the researchers involved in the study. “If this makes it possible to make a prosthetic sensitive by cheating the brain, it can

prove an important step towards better and more practical prosthetic hands than those available today.” The effect was confirmed by the subjects’ own descriptions of the experience and by their tendency to point to the hand when asked to localise the point of stimulation. That they experienced the rubber hand as their own was also substantiated physiologically in that they started to sweat when the hand was pricked with a needle. The researchers believe the study, which was carried out at the Red Cross hospital in Stockholm, opens up new opportunities for developing prosthetic hands that can be experienced by wearers as belonging to their own bodies. It was carried out at the Red Cross hospital in Stockholm, is part of the EU’s SmartHand project, which is administered from Lund University. The objective of the project is to develop a new type of thoughtcontrolled prosthetic hand with advanced motor and sensory capabilities.

Henrik Ehrsson

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Arm transplant world first for German farmer By Dominic Musgrave A GERMAN farmer has become the first person in the world to have a successful double arm transplant. Karl Merk, who lost his own arms in a corn shredder accident six years ago, underwent a 15-hour operation at the teaching hospital of the Technical University in the southern German city of Munich in July which required the skills of 40 staff, including surgeons, nurses and anesthesiologists. “It was really overwhelming when I saw that I had arms again,” he said: It's just fantastic. These are my arms, and I'm not giving them away again. “At first it was very hard but I lived without arms for six years, and now nothing can get me down.” The 54-year-old, who must wear a special corset to support the limbs

Karl Merk with Christoph Hoehnke

new arms, although so far there had been no sign of them being rejected.

while they heal, has already learned to open a door and use a light switch. And he said that he was looking forward to feeding and dressing himself and getting back on his motorbike.

“All in all, our wildest expectations have pretty much been fulfilled,” said Christoph Hoehnke, one of the lead doctors helping him through his intensive in-patient programme of physiotherapy and counselling. which is expected to last another four to six weeks.

But doctors have warned that there is still a risk that Karl’s immune system would react badly to the

The medical team said hand and lower arm transplants were still rare and that the operation, by

Karl Merk

attaching an elbow joint as well as an upper arm, posed a greater challenge for the immune and circulatory systems. “Never before was such a large amount of foreign tissue transplanted to a person,” Christoph added. While there are signs that nerves are already regrowing, it could still take up to two years before he relearns how to use his hands. He also has years of physiotherapy ahead of him.

Wii bid to help young rehabilitate TWO Lancashire hospitals have introduced Nintendo Wii Fit computer consoles into their physiotherapy departments to aid the rehabilitation of young patients.

A new device that offers a more effective method of splinting for wrist fractures has been awarded a grant from the Audi Design Foundation. The grant of £19,840 will allow Loughborough University lecturer George Torrens and consultant orthopaedic surgeon John Dooley from Hillingdon Hospital to produce a prototype of the device, known as Fit-Splint, and enable an initial series of clinical trials to begin. George said: “We are very happy that the Foundation has given us this opportunity to move our idea through this next critical stage and prove the technology for the new splint, and also to gain further investment.” 6

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The idea was the brainchild of a 12year-old patient and staff at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which run Chorley and South Ribble Hospital and Royal Preston Hospital. “We provide a paediatric and adolescent physiotherapy service,” said head of physiotherapy for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Lesley Waters. “One of our patients suggested it would be a good idea and new and fun way to get youngsters to undertake physiotherapy. “Wii Fit is a great way of using computer games to stimulate interest while performing exercises which can be uncomfortable.” The consoles were purchased with funds from the Incubator Appeal which uses donated loose change, old money and foreign currency for good causes at the Trust.


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A teenager who lost his left hand in an accident three years ago has become the second Briton to be fitted with an i-LIMB. Dominic Musgrave found out more.

Evan ‘an inspiration to us all’ EVAN Reynolds’ dreams of joining the Army were devastated when his arm was ripped off in an accident. The sports biology student at University of the West of England (UWE) was in a friend’s car hanging his hand out of the window when it was taken off by a wooden gate post. His life was only saved by his quick-thinking friends who applied a tourniquet made from T-shirts and waterproofs and stopped him bleeding to death. “My hand was amputated in seconds, it was very nasty,” he added. “The ambulance man who came to the scene told me that their quick-thinking had saved my life. I owe them everything. “When I was sat in hospital I was pretty devastated because I had always dreamed of joining the Army and going to Sandhurst, but there was obviously no chance of that.” Evan's elder brother Richard recalled seeing a report on the iLIMB and contacted Scottish

manufacturer Touch Bionics on his behalf. The hand is not surgically attached. He just has to imagine opening and shutting his hand or moving his fingers or thumb and the limb responds. Unlike previous prosthetics, the hand, which costs £10,000, can tell how tightly it is gripping, allowing the user a large degree of control. It is operated by tiny sensors resting against his arm muscles. Evan says it took only minutes to learn how to manipulate the limb. “Within a few minutes of it being fitted it was working,” he added. “It's the hundreds of things you take for granted,which I can do again – like peeling a potato, catching a ball, holding a bottle of water and opening a door.” The injury has also not stopped him playing rugby, and he says it took hours of practice to perfect a one-armed pass out of the back of the hand. He said: “I love sport and there is no way it was going to stop me

Evan has appeared on a Channel Five series called Extraordinary People

play rugby for my team back home. I always take the arm off to play though because it costs so much. I also play other sports, including golf, squash and table tennis.” Evan’s story has appeared on a recent television series on Channel Five called Extraordinary People. He is one of approximately 450 worldwide to have had the limb fitted.

“Evan is another great example of an i-LIMB hand user who is an inspiration to us all,” said Touch Bionics CEO Stuart Mead. “Our technology is setting new standards in prosthetic design, but frankly it's the patients themselves that are the truly extraordinary stories.” Touch Bionics were runner-up in the Prosthetics category at the BHTA excellence awards sponsored by Assistive Technologies magazine

Initiative halves in-patient time after replacements By Nicola Hyde THE amount of time patients who have undergone a hip or knee replacement spend in a hospital has halved at one hospital thanks to a new initiative. The Joint Care Programme at West Suffolk Hospital, which has been phased in by the trust over the last four years, encourages patients who have had similar operations on the same day to work closely with each other and healthcare professionals to help them get back on their feet. It has proved so successful that it has reduced the average number of days patients spend in hospital from 12 to 8

six, helping to improve efficiency and cut waiting times. The hospital was the first in the UK to encourage patients to “buyin” to their rehabilitation by helping each other and working alongside surgeons, nurses, occupational therapists and physiotherapists. It was introduced after Willem Schenk FRCS, one of the hospital’s consultant orthopaedic surgeons, saw how successful it had been in Holland. “The programme gives patients the chance to help each other by sharing their experiences and advising on how to overcome problems,” he

ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES I FEBRUARY/MARCH 2009

said.

on their feet.

“The group rehabilitation sessions also give patients the chance to see other people’s successes, giving them a better idea of what to expect when they are treated.

The programme uses eight special reclining chairs, brought with funds donated by the Women’s Royal Voluntary Service (WRVS), to allow patients’ limbs to be supported at exactly the right height and angle.

“Since it was introduced, the programme has matured to become a great success and the feedback we have had from patients has been overwhelming. “As well as helping to educate them, the initiative has also helped minimise the amount of time these patients are spending in hospital, which means we can treat even more people and help them get back

The chairs have been set up in a bay which also acts as a day room, giving patients the chance to discuss their problems and motivate each other. Patients are also given in depth knowledge about their operation and the best way to make a quick recovery in the weeks leading up to surgery.


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‘Virtual cane’ designed by graduate

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By Dominic Musgrave A BLIND graduate has designed a ‘virtual cane’ to help people with visual impairments build confidence by navigating their way through computer environments.

Aspire chief executive Brian Carlin shows MP Kevin Brennan around the gym

Government minister visits spinal injury training centre A GOVERNMENT minister visited a training centre for people with spinal injuries.

people, and a large sports hall used for activities such as wheelchair football.

Kevin Brennan MP was shown round the facilities at the Aspire Centre in Stanmore, which is in the running to be used by a visiting country during the 2012 Paralympics.

During his tour Kevin met some of Aspire’s service users, as well as discussing the needs of new spinally injured patients and how best to service them.

The centre, which is within the grounds of the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, boasts a 25m wheelchair accessible swimming pool, a gym suitable for disabled

Aspire is currently working with the TREAT Trust and looking at the possibility of building a similar centre to that in Stanmore in South Wales.

Having just graduated with a master of research degree in computer science from Nottingham Trent University, Allan Ridley has collaborated with software engineer Steven Battersby, to design the interface. Using the control devices from a Nintendo Wii for pointing and directing motion, users can travel through recreations of real world buildings while receiving auditory and vibratory feedback to assist them.

address issues such as social inclusion. “There has long been a lack of access to virtual reality for people who are blind,” he said. “Through this system, I hope people can learn in a safe environment and improve their skills and self-assurance when tackling mobility training. “Using Wii technology has many advantages as it is mainstream, easily available and affordable. “Also, the system can be modified – with both audio and vibratory feedback – for people with other disabilities to enhance their learning experience.”

The project could enable other people who are blind to practise in the virtual world before they visit places on their own.

Allan’s research will aim to promote greater accessibility within computing and raise more awareness of how software should be designed to suit all needs from the outset.

Allan is now developing aspects of his work while working towards a PhD with the university’s Interactive Systems Research Group (ISRG), which specialises in using the potential of video games, virtual environments and the internet to

He added: “Disabled people have a huge untapped skills base to offer the world of industry and commerce. By using information technology in more creative ways, we can help them develop their skills and put them to good use.”

Helping hand for guitarist, 27, who suffered a stroke A guitarist with Indie rock band The Long Blondes hopes to play the guitar again with the help of a bionic hand. Dominic Musgrave found out more. WHEN Dorian Cox suffered a stroke in his hotel room the day after the band returned from a successful tour of America he thought his career was over. It left him paralysed down the right side of his body, and led to the band announcing they would be splitting because of the uncertainty over his illness. But the 27-year-old is now undergoing neurological physiotherapy at PhysioFunction near his York home, including training sessions with a revolutionary mechanical glove called a SaeboFlex. Sarah Daniel, who runs the clinic, said Dorian’s case proves that strokes do not only affect the elderly.

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“Strokes don’t discriminate on age,” she added. “We see a whole range of people, from a girl of about 12 to people in their 80s or 90s. There are certain aspects of a person’s life which increase the risk of a stroke, such as smoking or obesity. “There are also genetics which make some people more disposed to strokes earlier in life, but in a lot of cases it is just bad luck.” The SaeboFlex positions the wrist and fingers into extension in preparation for functional activities. The user is able to grasp an object by voluntarily flexing his or her fingers. The extension spring system assists in re-opening the hand to release the object “We specialise in treating any injury

ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES I FEBRUARY/MARCH 2009

or condition which has affected somebody’s ability to move because of damage to their nervous system, such as strokes, head and spinal cord injuries, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s,” she added. “A lot of people who suffer a stroke may be able to move their should and elbow, but because they cannot

grasp anything they give up. “When Dorian first came to see me he had the ambition is to play guitar again, but had very little function in his arm or fingers. But, using the SaeboFlex as part of his rehab programme, he is progressing very well and I am sure he will achieve his goal.”


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Hip fracture patients ‘being put at risk’ NEWS

THE lives of elderly patients with hip fractures are being put at risk by hospitals diverting resources to meet NHS waiting list targets, it has been claimed. The British Orthopaedic Association recommends operating in 95 per cent of cases within a maximum of 48 hours of the patient being fit for surgery. But a poll of 124 of its surgeons suggests a fifth of patients wait longer than this, with more than half saying their hospital prioritised elective surgery over emergency cases to meet targets. The Department of Health said doctors should prioritise patients

based on clinical needs, but more than 40 per cent of those surveyed believed trauma care was worse since the 18 week target - from GP referral to treatment - was introduced in 2004. Clare Marx, president of the BOA, said the system is letting down the oldest and frailest patients in too many hospitals. "These patients come to hospital in extreme pain and distress, they often have other long-term medical conditions and may be confused or have dementia,” she added. "They are a group who are complicated to manage clinically and are not at present an NHS management priority."

Approximately 75,000 people in the UK suffer hip fractures each year, and this figure is set to double by 2050 with the ageing population. John Black, president of the Royal College of Surgeons, said fractures usually occur in elderly people following falls and require urgent treatment to reduce pain, restore mobility and prevent disability or death. "It cannot be right for emergency patients in great pain and in need of swift treatment to have to wait,” he added. "The NHS should allow surgeons the flexibility to treat these patients as a priority offering a proper service to this large and ever increasing group of patients."

John Black

Study examines United States hip replacement failures A NEW study has revealed the most common reasons why hip replacements fail in the United States. Researchers analysed data from approximately 50,000 patients who had to have their hip replacements redone between October 1, 2005 and December 31, 2006. They found the most common reasons for patients needing

subsequent hip replacement surgery include dislocation or loosening of the implant or an infection. “The reason why this study is important is because up until now it has been believed that the most common reason why hip replacements fail is because the bearing surface wears out,” said Dr Kevin Bozic, lead investigator of the study and assistant professor of orthopaedics at the University of

California. “Although our study confirmed that problems related to bearing surface wear do cause hip replacements to fail, we found that other problems may be even more common causes of hip replacement failure.” Results from the study also indicated there are things within the surgeon's control such as surgical technique and the way the implant is installed that physicians

should be thinking about as potential causes for failure as opposed to just design factors related to the implants. Kevin added: “Although we now have a better understanding as to why hip replacements fail, we need to do more detailed studies to find out the reasons why dislocation and infection are common causes of hip replacement failure.”


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Physios using games console to aid patients PHYSIOTHERAPISTS at two West Yorkshire hospitals are using a games console to improve the strength and co-ordination of amputee patients. The physiotherapy department at Bradford Royal Infirmary is using the Nintendo Wiis because playing tennis, golf, boxing, bowling and baseball demands a user acts out the physical movements involved in the sport. The console’s motion sensitive controller requires body movements similar to traditional therapy, but but provides so much distraction, patients do not notice any discomfort. “It is still very new but it is getting very good feedback from patients,” said physiotherapist Allen Brown. “Because they have such fun they don’t think about the movements they are making – they just do it. “It is good for weight transfer, as well as core stability, co-ordination

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and visual concentration.” Seacroft Hospital in Leeds has also installed the Nintendo Wii Fit balance board to help patients who have had legs amputated get used to using their prosthetic limbs. It reads real-life movements and mimics them on screen while taking part in sport, to help patients with rehabilitation and physical therapy. According to Lynn Hirst, a senior physiotherapist at the hospital, many patients have trouble balancing their weight using a prosthetic limb. To back that up there's some very lively games which make them take their weight right or left, forward or back, and that improves their core stability and their balance," she added. Prior to the Wii, patients had to depend on therapists to advise them of their progress. However, they can now use the board to see their fitness levels and adjust their balance.

A Louth orthopaedic surgeon has proved he is a cut above the rest by being included in a directory of the world's most accomplished men and women. Consultant orthopaedic surgeon Ramesh Nayak has made it into the 2009 edition of Who's Who in the World alongside such notable names as American presidentelect Barack Obama. Ramesh has been included in the book in recognition of the research and publications he has written on orthopaedic surgery, with particular

focussing on lower limb and trauma surgery. “It is a complete surprise. I have no idea how I came to be included in the book,” he said. “I just received a letter from the publishers saying that they would like to include me to recognise my hard work and dedication to success. “I was asked to send over a biography to them and was then selected for inclusion. It is a great honour for me to be included alongside some really famous names.”


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Assistive Technologies will be at BAPO – See us on Stand 40

BAPO

Leading companies set to exhibit at BAPO By Dominic Musgrave SPEAKERS from all over the world will attend this year’s annual BAPO event, while more than 60 of the leading companies will also be exhibiting. Highlights include Dr Ali Jawad, consultant rheumatlogist at the Royal London Hospital, who will give the Orthotic Education and Training Trust lecture on ‘Advances in the management of Rheumatoid Arthritis and the impact on orthotic management’. The Spinal Interest Group will feature Dr Louise Marcotte, Christine Coillard, Andrew J. Mills, Pascale Dion and Charles-Hilaire Rivard, with the topic for discussion ‘The treatment of adult Scoliosis utilising the SpineCor Dynamic Corrective Brace’. This will be followed by a talk by Martin Haines, chartered physiotherapist and managing director at Mobilis Healthcare, called ‘See how biomechanical screening of

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And Saeed Zahedi will be joined by Blatchford Clinical Services’ prosthetists Ken McCrea and Gemma Finn for the ‘Prosthetic care for the obese/bariatric patients... can we safely treat these patients?’ seminar.

The prosthetics free papers also cover a number of subjects, including ‘What can PAM do for you?’ by Andrew Russell and ‘Validation of MRI technology for prosthetic research purposes’ by Arjan Buis. The technical programme includes an update from the University of Strathclyde’s Colin Martin on the work is being carried out to develop the new HNC national qualification

ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES I FEBRUARY/MARCH 2009

THE conference has a couple of evening entertainment events planned. ‘A night in Manhattan’ sponsored by DeNovo Healthcare will be held on the Friday, while Saturday it is a ‘Night at Cheltenham races’ with an opportunity for photographs to be taken inside the Reebok Stadium, Bolton, where the conference is being held.

the pelvis can improve your orthotic prescription’.

The orthotics free papers feature seminars on a variety of subjects including ‘After spinal cord injury – client expectation and reality – general lessons for rehabilitation’ by Willie Munro and ‘The challenges of rehabilitation services/care in rural Tanzania’ by Sandy Sexton.

Entertainment events planned

This will be followed by a carvery dinner and the chance to cheer on the horses, with prizes awarded to winning tables. This will be followed by a disco. Dr Ali Jawad for rehab technicians before its launch in 2010. And a technical committee question time will also look back on what has been achieved in the last 12 years and its plans for the future. The subject for this year’s awareness day on the Friday before the conference is ‘Materials for orthotics and prosthetics’, and will feature speakers from several of the leading companies.

A couple of exhibitors are also offering delegates a couple of incentives. Gilbert and Mellish are offering students the chance to receive £25 from the cost of their weekend conference registration if they wear one of their polo shirts, while Otto Bock will give two delegates the opportunity to receive their full conference registration fees paid back to them if they enter a competition on their stand.


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Paralympian will deliver Ossur lecture PARALYMPIAN and sports commentator Marc Woods will deliver the Ossur lecture at this year’s 15th annual BAPO exhibition. Marc, who won 12 swimming medals at five different Games, had his leg amputated because of cancer when he was 17. The day after he had his stitches out he went swimming, and after a year he was quicker with one leg than when he had two. He has now retired from competition, having competed competitively for 17 years, winning a further 21 medals from either World or European Championship events. His inspirational presentation ‘The Path to Gold’ focuses on the need for everyone to take personal responsibility to team cohesion, and through to organisational change. Also with a sporting theme will be Sarah A. Deans and Sandra Sexton’s presentation entitled ‘The Need for SPEEAD (Sporting Prosthetics for Everyday and Elite Athletes with a Disability)’. Sarah and Sandra are the lecturer and director respectively at the National Centre for Prosthetics and

Company to launch new directory GILBERT and Mellish hopes to launch its new product directory at the BAPO exhibition. The directory will include a collection of new Piedro children’s footwear models covering the most popular lines such as Nextstep, Standard and Stability boots.

G&M will also be introducing a number of new spinal and knee brace products to its range that have not been available in the UK to date. “These are very exciting times for G&M, who are a growing force within the orthopaedic bracing market,” said marketing manager Gemma Hirst.

Trio heading for China Marc Woods

Orthotics at the University of Strathclyde. They say that preparation for the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow has highlighted a need to champion sport for people worth lower limb deficiency and give those people who may now have participated the opportunity to get involved. Their talk will discuss the aims and objectives of the recently created national SPEEAD network, which will focus on building professional expertise, increase research capacity and facilitate knowledge transfer in sporting prosthetics. The event takes place at the Reebok Stadium, Bolton from March 27-29.

BAPO

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A TEAM of three from the Midlands Centre for Spinal Injuries at Oswestry orthopaedic hospital is visiting the Sichuan province in China which was devastated by an earthquake last year. They are part of a larger UK team which will be making presentations and working in hospitals in Chengdu, Sichuan province and visiting hospitals in Beijing for 10 days.

Ward sister Julie Haughton, occupational therapist Anwen Evans and spinal physiotherapist Becky Dytor.

The volunteers are being deployed by the medical charity UK-MED with funding from the Department for International Development at the request of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China.

“We are pleased to have been asked to give practical help and advice,” said Becky. “There is only one spinal injury centre in the whole of China and many of the earthquake victims have sustained spinal cord injuries so there is a huge need.

The Oswestry team includes spinal physiotherapist Becky Dytor, ward sister Julie Haughton and occupational therapist Anwen Evans.

“We will be providing presentations to help train the clinical teams in China, as well as working alongside them with patients.”

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‘Body double’ could help people regain movement

NEWS

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Students show off their work at the exhibition

OT students show off their designs A GROUP of occupational therapy students at Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen hosted an exhibition of products they have designed at the Garthdee campus. They promoted and illustrated services related to occupational therapy provided by a number of agencies who were represented at the exhibition. As part of their course work the students spent five weeks working in groups in health services outside the university, including Aberdeen royal infirmary and the health centre at Craiginches prison. Course tutor Fiona Warrender said the end products will be used in the health

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services where the students worked. “The exhibition demonstrated the various ways in which our students can work with health-related organisations in the community,” she added. “The third year enterprise project aims to develop the students' skills in problem-solving, creativity, team-work, time management, evaluation and reflective skills, all of which are essential once they become practising occupational therapists.” The products produced included video clips, web pages, DVDs, posters, promotional presentations, leaflets and information packs aimed at patients and health practitioners.

ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES I FEBRUARY/MARCH 2009

A SYSTEM that creates a virtual body double of a person’s skeleton and muscles could help people trying to regain movement after an illness by showing them how well they are exercising. The Human Body Model, developed by Motek Medical in Amsterdam, uses a virtual double to show which muscles a person is using by highlighting them in green. Users carry out exercises, such as running on a treadmill, while wearing a suit with 47 reflective markers placed in the positions of specific muscles. Infrared strobe lights, flashing several hundred times a second, help eight cameras to track the markers. "It allows you to see the muscle groups you are using in real time, and even the forces they are creating, which are usually invisible," said Motek founder Oshri EvenZohar. “The user's on-screen output is not a direct measure of their muscle activity, but is based on

existing models of the anatomy and physics of the human body and is intended as a tool to help the patient.” Sensors on the floor of the treadmill can also be used to measure the force applied to the ground by the user's feet to give more information on their muscle output and the load on their joints. The final stage is to feed this information into computer models, which help create the detailed onscreen display of the user. The software used to help create the double was trained by directly measuring the force generated by people's muscles while recording their motion and the electrical activity of their muscles. The system is being tested at Sheba Hospital in Tel Aviv, Israel, where it is helping people regain movement after a stroke. Researchers at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio are also using the system to study gait and locomotion in healthy, active people.


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Regular news

Five minutes with ...

DJO Global is producing a quarterly e-newsletter to provide specialists with regular, informative news from the orthopaedic field together with company updates.

Simon Thompson, managing director of Dudley Surgical Appliances Limited

It will also includes news on grants, fellowship programmes and research projects from around the world.

‘I would like to see patients receiving the support and products they need rather than cheap poor quality non effective ones which ensure they will be back tomorrow. £1 spent on orthotics today saves £4 tomorrow’ When did you become interested in the industry and why? I had an interest in the orthotic industry from an early age as my father began the company in 1965, But more directly over the last few years. How did your career in the industry begin? My father was nearing retirement and I was a director of an aerospace manufacturing company having financial problems with the A380 Airbus project. I came into the company to learn the business from top to bottom and move it forward.

If you could make one recommendation to take the industry forward what would it be? I would recommend that there should be a standardisation of orthotic provision in the NHS rather than all the varied models with a lot less procurement hubs. At least we would know where we stand, rather than some contracts, some in house, some a mixture of both. What would you like to see happen to the industry in the future? I would like to see patients receiving the support and products they need rather than cheap poor

Lieve Vanden Berghe, director of international marketing, said: “With our quarterly newsletter we aim to provide regular, informative news from the orthopaedic field together with company updates. We very much hope it becomes a platform for sharing information about each other’s projects and common interests.”

NEWS

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Simon Thompson

quality non effective ones which ensure they will be back tomorrow. £1 spent on orthotics today saves £4 tomorrow. How do you see the next 12 months panning out for your company? What is your goal? 2009 looks to be a strange year with the credit crunch, which may affect the private side now and then. When public spending is cut in the years ahead more pressure will be upon hospitals for more cutbacks. I would like to buck that trend with new developments and products as well as some diversification.

Cast shoe available A NEW shoe which protects casts is now available in the UK. Mobilis Healthcare’s Darco Body Armor cast shoe has been designed to shield the cast from moisture, shock and everyday wear and features a unique bungee closure system for ease of fastening and adjustment. It is intended for use with plaster and fibreglass casts, heavy compression bandaging or with standard hosiery during post-operative recovery. The shoe is available in five adult sizes between extra small and extra large.

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EVENTS

Paralympian to attend Naidex Craig Payne

Seminar series CRAIG Payne, senior podiatry lecturer at La Trobe University in Australia, will lead a series of clinical biomechanical seminars across the UK and Ireland. The course aims to provide participants with greater knowledge and understanding of foot biomechanics and orthotics and apply these principles in their own clinical practice. The course, which is sponsored by A. Algeo Ltd, is detailed in full at podiatry-arena.com and listed below.

THE Association of Wheelchair Children (AWC) will run ‘Hot Wheels’, the KideQuip feature at the Naidex exhibition.

A youngster negotiates an obstacle at last year’s event

Wheelchair basketball paralympian Ade Adepitan, the patron of AWC, will also attend the first day of the show which takes place at the Birmingham NEC from April 28-30.

New venue

The charity will host free training events specifically tailored to the needs of disabled children, concentrating on practical aspects of wheelchair skills such as road safety, wheelies, kerb work and coping with rough grounds and slopes. AWC will also be running ‘have a go’ sessions throughout the three days, featuring wheelchair games, challenges, dance sessions and an introduction to wheelchair basketball. Spare wheelchairs will be available so that non-disabled parents and siblings can join in with the fun. As part of KideQuip, free topical seminars will also be taking place featuring guest speakers including multisensory room specialist Richard Hirstwood, who will be running two

A child having fun at last year’s Naidex seminars on the first day of the show, and National Autistic Society training consultant Chris Barson, who will be running a seminar on all three days.

Diary dates February 17 and 18 – Craig Payne seminar – Manchester February 19 and 20 – Craig Payne seminar - Newcastle Upon Tyne February 27 – Össur Academy spinal symposium – Stoke Mandeville Hospital March 1-4 – Podiatry Services managers conference – Moat House Hotel, Stoke-on-Trent March 7-8 – SCP Ireland annual conference – Galway March 8 – British Chiropody and Podiatry Association annual convention – Bishop Grosseteste College, Lincoln March 12 – Kidz in the Middle – Ricoh Arena, Coventry March 17 and 18 – The Care Show – Bournemouth March 20 – Northen Ireland SCP annual conference – County Antrim March 27-29 – BAPO – Reebok Stadium, Bolton April 3 – Össur Academy sports medicine conference – Cardiff University April 15-17 – Posture and Mobility Group national training event – Warwick Arts Centre, University of Warwick  If you have an event which you would like to feature ring Dominic Musgrave on 01226 734407 or email dm@whpl.net

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ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES I FEBRUARY/MARCH 2009

BEYOND Boundaries Live has undergone a major transformation and will be held at a new venue. The new-look show, which will take place at Farnborough’s FIVE venue, will see a host of activities and features – ranging from sporting challenges, a rock climbing wall and a ski slope through to a Paralympic experience, cooking demonstrations and an off-road test track. Event director Mark Brewster said: “The new venue allows for the natural expansion of the show year-onyear.” There will be a large number of exhibitors,offering a comprehensive range of products and services for the disabled market. The event, based on the TV series, takes place on July 4 and 5.

Company sponsors Simon’s charity skydive GILBERT and Mellish is sponsoring a man who is suffering from spinal muscular atrophy to do a charity skydive. Simon Maders, 38, was born with the rare genetic neuromuscular disease that affects one in 6000 babies born. There are numerous side effects resulting from the condition, one being abnormally high foot-arches which require specialist footwear, and as a child Simon wore Piedro footwear for many years.

As yet there is no known cure for SMA, and usually the long term prognosis is not favourable. However, Simon has an unusual strain of the disease which has been in complete remission for over 10 years, enabling him to still lead a fairly active lifestyle. He needs to raised a minimum of £395 for the Jennifer Trust Fund, the only national charity in the UK dedicated to supporting those who suffer either directly or indirectly with the disease. To sponsor Simon visit www.justgiving.com/simonmaders


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Group makes acquisition A. ALGEO Ltd has purchased Hertfordshire-based podiatry instruments company Nova. The group hopes the acquisition will give them the opportunity to expand the podiatry range and offer more of products for podiatry customers. Nova was founded 25 years ago by Clive Over, a graduate of the London Foot Hospital. He built relationships with German instrument manufacturers to develop an extensive range of products to satisfy all the requirements of a busy surgery. Chairman Alan Sheridan says he is excited about the new opportunities the take over will have. “Clive has decided to retire from active business life, and I am delighted that we are in the position to take over a company which has built up a fine reputation for reliability and quality of service over the past 25 years,” he added. “The acquisition provides us with the opportunity to take over the distributorship of many quality instruments in addition to extending our existing range particularly into export markets.” Clive will work with Algeos for a period of time to ensure the transfer go smoothly, while his son will continue to maintain the practice formerly run by his father in Goff’s Oak.

Kathryn looking forward to new role KATHRYN Fisher has joined DM Orthotics as a neurophysiotherapist. Kathryn, who previously worked in the NHS for 25 years, says she is looking forward to working with Lycra again having been part of the first research into its use in the industry. “I am looking forward to being part of a young, dynamic team,” she said. “ And taking the concept of Lycra out into the

Knee brace boost for motorcycle team ÖSSUR UK has donated three pairs of knee braces to a motorcycle team which is accompanying the world’s first bio-fuelled flying car as it embarks on an expedition.

physio field is something that really excites me.” She added: “In this day and age people are becoming increasingly used to having a choice and not settling for the first thing they can find. Lycra is not being widely used because the evidence is not out there to support it so it is giving physios an excuse not to use it. I want to change that.”

Grant boost for ‘diabetic shoe’

The British team will travel to Timbuktu in the Parajet SkyCar, a home-made vehicle which can transform itself from a car into an aircraft in minutes.

MEDICAL footwear specialist Langer UK has received a grant of £30,000 towards production of a 'diabetic shoe' specially designed to prevent chronic ulceration.

Knee specialist and product manager James Woodgates fitted deputy expedition leader Tim Maw, Jon Haw and Andrew Wiggins with the braces before they set off on their journey by land and sky on the 6,000 km (3,730 miles) expedition through France, Spain and north Africa, across the Sahara to the finish. The trip is expected to take approximately 40 days.

It has taken a major slice of the funding allocated by Advantage West Midlands and the European Development Fund to support innovation and product development in the region.

Össur previously supplied braces for Ewen McGregor and Charlie Boardman on their lengthy motorcycle trip featured in ‘a Long Way Down’.

Langer's diabetic shoe concept went before a panel of 20 experts before being

INDUSTRY NEWS

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awarded the maximum grant available under the scheme, and the Staffordshire-based company is pressing ahead with bringing its design to the market by the summer. Operations director Peter Taylor said: “After two years of research into the design, we were delighted to be recognised by the fund which gives us the support we need to bring this product to market and expand research in other areas.”

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SPORTS REHABILITATION

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Double award for Middlesex facility A MIDDLESEX facility which supports people with spinal injuries and a leisure centre in Kent were the big winners at the first IFI Awards sponsored by Cybex. Aspire National Training Centre in Stanmore and Pent Valley in Folkestone picked up two awards each at the ceremony at the Birmingham ICC which celebrated the work of Inclusive Fitness Initiative accredited facilities nationwide.

now means to the industry to be regarded as inclusive. “The industry has made staggering steps to progress from where the IFI started in 1998, yet it is important not to rest on our laurels. This year’s winners will need to raise their game even further to replicate their success next year.” Riverside Ice and Leisure Centre in Chelmsford and The Pemberton Centre in Rushden won the building outstanding partnerships award and developing sport for all prizes respectively at the event which was hosted by Chris Holmes MBE, Britain’s most successful Paralympic swimmer.

Aspire won the innovation in inclusive marketing and the engaging volunteers awards, while Pent Valley won the creating inclusive environments and the main prize of the night, the IFI award of outstanding achievement.

DC Leisure were recognised with the demonstrating corporate commitment honour, while Anne Meachem’s work with the Pendle Leisure Trust was rewarded with the individual commitment to

IFI national director Sue Catton said: “The IFI awards are a clear signal of the momentum that the IFI has gathered and just what it

Presenter Chris Holmes MBE

inclusive fitness award. Michael McGrath, the only disabled person to have reached both the North and South Poles, gave an insight into his experiences as a polar adventurer.

As an award presenter he was also one of the first people to commit to the IFI Inspirations scheme, a collaboration of individuals who support and endorse the work of the initiative.

Extra recruits to probe tennis elbow treatment By Mary Ferguson RESEARCHERS at the University of Queensland are recruiting people to help investigate the effect of different combinations of injections and physiotherapy treatments for tennis elbow. Chair of sports physiotherapy and head of the division of physiotherapy, professor Bill Vicenzino, said tennis elbow was usually brought about by overusing the arm and hand, but could occur in people of all fitness levels. Skipper Glen Chapple is put through his paces

Salford University students put cricketers to the fitness test SALFORD University sports science students have put the Lancashire County Cricket Club first team squad through their paces. In preparation for the new season, the cricketers, dropped into the university's high-tech human performance labs for a gruelling fitness testing session. They were analysed for speed, strength, power, agility, flexibility, body fat and endurance, using cutting-edge technology. Students from the directorate of sport in the school of health care 20

professions analysed the players under the supervision of academic staff, and the results will be used by the team's coaches to plan a training strategy for the season ahead. The university's Dr Phil GrahamSmith said: “The tests were a real success and the players enjoyed learning more about their fitness levels and making use of our facilities. Hopefully the results should enable them to train smarter and play at their optimum throughout the long season ahead.

ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES I FEBRUARY/MARCH 2009

“The students also benefitted from this hands-on training with some of the fittest and most accomplished sportsmen in the UK. Our investment in the human performance lab and our highly qualified staff helps us to attract professional sports clubs and give our students some great experience.” The session was part of ongoing fitness testing, post-injury rehabilitation, and expert exercise and health advice which the University is delivering as official higher education partner to the club.

“For example, it can occur in people who usually do office work and then either do a bout of gardening or renovations at home after hours,” he added. “The pain is noticeable when the patients use his or her hand to manipulate things for example, when shaking hands, lifting a tea cup or pot or even light, one-cup pots, lifting shopping bags and opening doors.” He added: “Clinical practitioners (physiotherapists and medical practitioners) feel that combining the two treatments gives the best results, as they not only will speed up recovery but prevent injury re-occurring.” Bill previously led studies which compared common treatments including steroid injections, physiotherapy and a wait-and-see approach. The results were published in the British Medical Journal and have helped to provide clinical recommendations for patients and health professionals.


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Competition seeking bright ideas to help disabled children YOUNG people with special needs are being encouraged to submit bright ideas to help other disabled children.

young people across the whole disability spectrum – whether they have a learning, physical or sensory impairment.”

For the Ready Willing and Mobile competition 2009, the Mouth and Foot Painting Artists (MFPA) has linked with the competition organiser, the charity Mobility Choice, to sponsor an additional prize for the best entry from a young person with a disability.

The competition seeks innovative ideas to help less able children to achieve greater independence, be more mobile and able to join in doing things we all enjoy – at school, at home and at play.

Now in its fifth year the competition is designed to stimulate and reward thinking about disability, accessibility and inclusivity from a young age.

It could be a concept for a new product or service that everyone can use, but is especially good for disabled children, or an idea for developing an existing item or facility.

It is open to both disabled and nondisabled young people aged seven to 16 - either as individual entries or groups of up to four – from schools and clubs.

The top entry from a disabled person wins the MFPA prize of £1,000 art and craft materials for their school or club and £250 art and craft materials for themselves.

“We're delighted that the MFPA is supporting the competition with this additional prize for budding young disabled artists,” said Mobility Choice executive director Jacqui Jones.

They will also be entered into the final judging for the outright winner, who bags £1,000 cash and £250 Staedtler art and craft materials for their school or club.

“This extra category is open to

For themselves they win a digital camera and personal printer, £100

worth of HarperCollins books of choice, a weekend break for four in London with a trip on the London Eye and a VIP visit to the Mobility Roadshow, which takes place at Kemble airfield from June 4-6.

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Last year’s winner Samantha Preston, 13, from Derby High School receives her prizes from Ade Adepitan along with her teacher.

ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES I FEBRUARY/MARCH 2009

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PRODUCTS

DJO NEW PROCARE DIABETIC SHOE

PIEDRO® MEN’S STITCHED DOWN RANGE FROM G&M

The shoe can be easily taken on and off, which allows access to the affected area, while the removable reinforced squared toe box and wide foot bed leave ample room for wound dressings. It is also lightweight with a rocker sole making it easier and more comfortable to walk as the redistribution of weight of the patient through the plantar surface off-loads the wound area. The shoe has even been made in a universal left/right sizing making this new addition to the ProCare range another excellent tool in the quest to maximise patient comfort in the foot and ankle market.

PRESENTING a fabulous collection, G&M has launched a new collection of men’s orthopaedic footwear in two modern styles, including both shoes and boots. These new styles provide all of the extra depth and space required from orthopaedic footwear without compromising on comfort or adaptability. Developed using the original Dr. Livingstone last, these styles are deceptively light-weight yet incorporate extended stiffeners to provide extra comfort and support in a modern design. Manufactured to the same high quality as their children’s orthopaedic footwear, Piedro’s® Stitched Down models are an exceptional choice for an off-the-shelf orthopaedic shoe. Available in two colours - brown and black, in two materials leather and nubuck, in two widths and in sizes six to 13.5, each pair have EVA inlays as standard. All styles can be modified for adaptations if required, and these can be provided at the point of ordering from G&M, who use only genuine Piedro® materials for all alterations.

DJO UK Ltd

Gilbert and Mellish Ltd

Enquiries: Telephone 01483 459 659 or visit www.djoglobal.co.uk

Enquiries: Telephone 0121 475 1101 or email cs@gilbert-mellish.co.uk

CRISPIN ORTHOTICS’ INNOVATIVE CARBON FIBRE ORTHOSES

A UNIQUE 3D DIGITAL CASTING AND FOOT MEASUREMENT SOLUTION

CRISPIN Orthotics Ltd offers a range of bespoke carbon fibre orthotic solutions to provide clinicians with a real alternative to thermoplastic orthoses.

FOTOSCAN 3D is a unique scanning system that creates instant 3D digital casts and delivers accurate and repeatable foot measurements.

THE new ProCare Diabetic shoe from DJO, offers an ideal solution for the treatment of diabetic ulcers. The shoe includes the Impax insole which is constructed of pre-cut layered Plastazote ® foam. The bottom two layers of foam can be easily removed around the affected areas and help to relieve pressure from specific areas so promote wound healing. Another key benefit in the design is that the top layer of foam stays in contact with the plantar surface of the foot, not allowing for “hot spots”.

In addition to the well documented high strength – low weight properties associated with carbon fibre, the post preg material used by Crispin Orthotics has the benefit of being heat mouldable after manufacture, enabling adjustments to be performed in clinic and avoid time consuming return of the orthosis to the manufacturer for adjustment. The material properties are fully exploited and orthoses of any shape can be produced. In addition, by varying the carbon fibre mix within the substrate, a mix of structural/functional characteristics within an individual orthosis can be achieved. The specialist product team can create an orthosis to meet individual patient needs using functional requirement data provided by the clinician in conjunction with their knowledge of carbon mechanics. Alternatively the clinician can create their design using a carbon orthosis specification form which can be provided on request.

A FotoScan 3D foot scan is a quick and simple photographic process, taking only a few seconds per foot. The result is a 3D digital cast, accurate to within 0.5 mm, allowing you to take a wide range of precise foot measurements. And FotoScan 3D digital casts can also be viewed in full colour. So as well as measuring foot shape, you can also accurately measure and monitor ulcers and other serious skin conditions. FotoScan 3D is a powerful clinical tool with proven applications in:  3D casting for custom orthopaedic footwear  Accurate measurements for stock and modular footwear  3D casting and foam box scanning for custom orthotic insoles  2D and 3D measurement of foot ulcers and wounds  Full colour 3D images for clinical records FotoScan 3D is already revolutionising the supply of orthotics and custom footwear.

Crispin Orthotics Ltd Enquiries: Telephone 0113 271 7117 or visit www.crispinorthotics.com

Precision 3D Ltd

HYPEREXTENSION ORTHOSIS

CASTING SAFETY STRIP

The new 28R140 Dorso Arexa hyperextension orthosis from Otto Bock combines ultimate functionality with a progressive, sporty design. Offering a load-relieving and stabilising effect for your lumbar spine and lower thoracic spine, it features custom adjustment options, a high level of wearer comfort and an innovative design. With only one size required the orthosis covers a fitting spectrum for waist circumferences of up to 150 centimetres. This is made possible by the extension elements which you can attach using a simple click system.

SAFETY of your patient is paramount especially in these days of litigation. Cast removal has been a potentially dangerous process in the past when using knives or blades. It is the duty of the clinician to prevent the patient from being put at risk. The Casting Safety Strip is a specially made PVC channel that creates a space under the plaster for your plaster scissors, protecting the patient at all times. We can now offer our specially designed stainless steel plaster scissors for use with the Casting Safety Strip. Not only are they safe, they make plaster removal extremely easy. The Casting Safety Strip process is used in the teaching of student Prosthetists and Orthotists in the UK. Casting Safety Strip costs £15.90 per metre Special Cast scissors £19.00 per pair Prosthetist/orthotist starter kit £35.00  1 metre casting strip  Special cast scissors  Indelible pencil  Chinagraph pencil Postage and packaging £5.00 M G Gillgan Ltd Enquiries: Telephone 0161 747 8728 or email mggilligan@hotmail.com

Auto-adaptive supports and soft, skin-friendly pads make the orthosis especially comfortable to wear. Another benefit: thanks to centrally attached easy-to-use ratchet locks, the orthosis is easy to apply and remove. It is also waterresistant, which means it can be worn with no restrictions in the shower or during water therapy. Dorso Arexa – the new standard for stabilisation of the spine (Th10 to L2). Otto Bock Healthcare Plc Telephone 0845 430 1231 www.ottobock.co.uk

22 ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES I FEBRUARY/MARCH 2009

Enquiries: Telephone 0117 934 9812 or email sales@precision3d.co.uk


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Assistive Technologies ( Feb/March 09)