Advanced Material for Microsurgical Gripping Tools
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133 Defense Highway, #212, Annapolis, MD, 21401
AbstractThis research will develop and demonstrate a new gripping tool for microsurgery that exhibitssuperior performance and extended life over current state-of-the-art stainless steel microsurgical forceps.Current stainless steel forceps rely on the alignment of gripping teeth to achieve high gripping power andsuffer from short service lives as a result of frictional and corrosive wear associated with microsurgeryitself and autoclave sterilization, respectively. These devices are also exorbitantly expensive andcontribute to the high health care costs for microsurgical procedures. This gripping concept eliminatesthe risk of misalignment and provides consistent, high gripping power. Advanced ceramic materials andefficient fabrication processes will be employed to extend the service life and reduce the manufacturingcosts. Materials will be screened, prototypes fabricated and performance and service life testsperformed. Quantitative improvement over current stainless steel forceps will be documented. Prototypegrippers will be evaluated by an Ophthalmic Surgeon. Phase II of this project will address remainingengineering issues and will extend the Phase I evaluations to clinical trials.
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