Teesside University collaborated with healthcare innovation company 2PD to design and develop a new medical device which could support people who have had amputation surgery.
Now completed, the device is undergoing a clinical trial to investigate its efficacy in treating phantom limb pain.
Phantom limb pain occurs when amputees experience sensations which feel like they are coming from an amputated limb.
It can be seriously debilitating and is a common experience for amputees.
The new device stimulates different parts of the body and helps the brain to rewire its mental map of the amputated limb, which has been shown to reduce phantom limb pain.
Teesside University student Sarah Oatway is testing the product as part of her doctoral studies through a prestigious research fellowship.
The 1851 Industrial Fellowship was awarded to Sarah to allow her to conduct the research on behalf of 2PD, her employer.
Sarah said: “I feel honoured to be awarded the Fellowship to complete my PhD and proud that this project can potentially help make a real difference to the lives of amputees.
“Phantom limb pain can make everyday life very difficult, and the work we’re undertaking could help to alleviate symptoms for those affected.”
Jason Timms, CEO, from 2PD, added: “Our strong partnership with Teesside University has been instrumental in perfecting this device. As we embark on our clinical trial, we’re enthusiastic about the journey ahead and about relieving phantom limb pain for many in need.
Phantom limb pain can make everyday life very difficult, and the work we’re undertaking could help to alleviate symptoms for those affected.
“We’re proud to be recognised by the Royal Commission for Sarah’s exceptional contribution, and for the wider importance of this project.”
This project contributes to broader work being carried out at the University surrounding the treatment and management of persistent pain.
Professor Cormac Ryan, from Teesside University’s Centre for Rehabilitation, said: “Here at Teesside University, we do not stand still.
“In recent years, we have worked alongside an artificial intelligence powerhouse; contributed to a national awareness campaign; and conducted pioneering research all to understand, manage and treat persistent pain.
“This project is the latest in that line of incredibly important work, and we hope that the results of the clinical trial will allow the device to be brought to market to help those in need of it.”
John Lavery, Secretary at the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851, said: “The Industry and Engineering Committee of the Royal Commission were hugely impressed by Sarah’s research proposal and personal journey, and were delighted to be able to include her, Teesside University and 2PD in their Industry Fellowship programme, which has been successfully linking SMEs and academia together to deliver innovative and ground-breaking research for the UK for over three decades.”
If you are interested in participating in the study and would like more information, please visit the website.
Teesside researchers trial phantom limb pain device
BBC News, Web, 18/02/2024 An app-controlled device which could help amputees reduce phantom limb pain is being trialled nationally.
Researchers trial phantom limb pain device
Yahoo News, Web, 18/02/2024 The device, developed at Teesside University, is attached to the body with an adhesive patch.
Trial for device for phantom limb pain developed on Teesside
Northern Echo, Print and Web, 14/02/2024 A groundbreaking medical device being developed by researchers in the North East could be used to treat sufferers of phantom limb pain.
Researchers trialling new device to support amputees
Cision News, Web, 07/02/2024 A new medical device developed by Teesside University researchers in a pioneering project could be used to treat phantom limb pain.