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Healing Assessment of Fractured Femur: Orthopaedic SHM

W. HONG, W. K. CHIU, M. RUSS, Z. K. CHIU

Abstract


Bone fractures are fixated to facilitate healing. The fixations used are broadly classified as internal and external fixation. External fixations are often used as a temporary means to stabilise the fracture prior to the application of the internal fixation. However, in the case of injuries suffered during combat, external fixations have been reported to be used as definitive treatments. When fixated, the healing process of the fractured region can take several months depending on the extent of the fracture. The ability to ascertain union at the fracture region is crucial to the patient’s return to normal duties. The assessment techniques available include X-ray and CTscans. This paper presents a set of findings to demonstrate the utilisation of the construction of an external fixation to integrate structural health monitoring concepts to facilitate the establishment of the state of union of a fractured femur. The paper will firstly provide a brief review of healing and union of fractured bones, the types of fixation used and the current methods of assessing healing and bone union. A set of experimental results will be presented to demonstrate the potential of integrating structural health monitoring concept in the overall clinical management of fractures.

doi: 10.12783/SHM2015/178


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