Smart motion sensor for navigated prosthetic surgery

Guiding the Surgeon's Hand

When a short walk becomes a struggle for a person suffering from arthritis sometimes the only solution is a hip or knee replacement. In the operating room, the surgeon needs the best tools to be able to place the prosthesis as accurately as possible. This is where Caroline Claasen-Göntje came in. The aim of her project was to develop a new intelligent tool that will still be used manually, while guiding the surgeon's movements along a planned trajectory. More specifically, she intended to design a surgical saw whose position and orientation will be controlled on two sides: markers will be placed on the patient, and sensors added to the tool will send information to a computer. As a result, the accurately placed prosthesis will bring back normal and longer-lasting mobility. As hip and knee arthroplasty is an increasingly common type of surgery – especially for elderly people – the system designed by Caroline Claasen-Göntje could be widely used.

I am developing a motion sensor which combines different types of sensors to determine its motion in space. It is to be used to follow the motion of a handheld tool in a computer-assisted surgery system. For this purpose, the motion sensor has to be very fast: this means we need a high number of about 200 to 300 measurements per second and the computation time has to be short. The goal is to be faster than the surgeon's reaction in order to correct his motion.

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