Center for Musculoskeletal Research

Picture of Gary To

Gary To

Gary is originally from Hong Kong. He came to the United States in 1999 as a high school exchange student. It is still debatable whether his decision to go to University of Tennessee is a mistake as he claimed.

Development of the Telemetrical Intraoperative Pressure Sensor for Soft Tissue Balancing - First stage

The space block is an instrument for surgeons to balance the flexion and extension gap intra-operatively. Surgeons, while performing TKA, are required to make these bone cuts on the tibia plateau and the distal end of the femur to fit the implants based on their personal experiences.

On top of that, with the introduction of Minimum Invasive Surgery (MIS), the area being exposed during surgery is dramatically reduced due to the smaller incision, which in turn greatly reduces the visibility of the joint for the surgeon. While the longevity of the implants is heavily related to the balancing the flexion and extension gap, it is not reliable to perform implantation from objective biased judgment.

Adding pressure sensing MEMS into the spacer block can provide real-time information for the surgeon about the medial and lateral compartment pressure of the joint during surgery. Hence, soft tissue balancing can be done based on an subjective measurement. Moreover, correction can be made with less complication if the compartmental information is known at the earlier stage of the surgery.

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