Proposed projects 1999-2000: BME 272-273
|Dr. Joseph Bruner|
|Dr Bob Galloway
|Dr. Paul King
Dear Engineering Department,
Subject: Challenge for you're engineering students.
You see my son is four years old and is paralyzed from the chest down and he's unable to walk. Not being able to walk brings on several problems but health problems arise from not having any weight bearing on the lower extremities. He has braces and a walker but he's unable to understand the function it takes to make them move. They are chest high braces that take a swing gate to make each leg move. My hopes are that someone can come up with a way to make the brace move each leg by the push of a button on the walker. I'm not mechanically minded but I know there has to be a way to help not only my son but also other children whom have no mobility. My challenge is for your students to come up of a way for my son to walk around the house or driveway at least part of the time to help with the medical problems that arise from using a wheelchair so often. I'll be sending this letter to different colleges and I hope to hear from you soon." (name withheld, letter via Dr. Overholser)
Dr. Burelbach (senior anesthesiology resident
|"Vanderbilt Vaccine Clinic Dynamic Database"
..."Assist in converting a Unix-based proprietary database into a more flexible dynamic database that will use a web interface. The structure of the database is in Microsoft Access, and the interface will utilize Cold Fusion. Experience with Cold Fusion, Access, and NT server software is preferred"... We are executing an important transition from a locally used database to a secure Web-based strategy that will be used in ongoing multicenter vaccine trials. Students will gain real-world experience in defining state of the art firewalls and other security measures. The student(s) will develop user friendly data entry hardware and software solutions that can be used in fast-paced clinical and laboratory settings.
|Dr. Bill Walsh
|1. A potential project would be to dramatically
decrease noise pollution in the NICU by converting the audible alarms which now go off
frequently (every 7 seconds on average) with a visual light system at each bedside. This
would require understanding the alarm outputs and designing circuitry to change to a
2. I would dearly like to have a computer literate student complete the ECMO model project begun last year. I now have a working copy of your excellent program, there are numerous minor corrections I need to make prior to being actually able to try it as a teaching tool like adding the Venous Sat display to the scenarios, but unfortunately although I feel rather competent as a neonatologist it would probably take me a years study to learn how to access and edit the program. I have no one familiar enough with visual basic to "get into the program" and change it. Do you know of anyone who could perform this magic? Thanks
3. I feel that the design of a teaching model for neonatal ventilation is possible to address.
4. Development of intelligent monitoring with Dr Lindstrom (see below)
|Dan.Lindstrom@mcmail.vanderbilt.edu||It would be possible to use the NICU SIMON system to do a senior project. The server is connected to one bed in the NICU, and collects data from the HP Merlin monitor and the SaO2 monitor. A project could involve developing a smart monitor that would use the redundant heartrate information to distinguish electrode problems from real cardiac events. Another idea would be to try to detect real apnea episodes and notify the attending physician of the frequency and duration of apneic events. Patrick Norris or Benoit Dawant would be able to tell you more about interfacing with the system.|
|Dr. Ed Stone, Otolaryngology
Technical supervision: Dr. King or other...
Description: Individuals handicapped by weak voice often find need for a louder voice when the listener is (a) not able to see the individual's face and (b) when there is significant ambient noise. Both conditions are encountered when the individuals attempting to communicate while driving a car as, for example,those in real estate sales, cab/limo drivers, etc.
A possible solution might be to employ a head-mounted, voice activated, FM microphone which would provide a voiced signal that would transmitted to the vehicle's radio and played in "quadraphonic" sound to both the front and back seat passengers. This would seem to be a project that might eventually have appeal for the auto industry.
Project 2: Title: Refinement of a device for assessing air flow rate during production of voice based upon the Bernoulli effect.
Description: Previous work by Bio-engineering students resulted in a new approach to assessing air flow rate during voice production. The final product was limited by yet unsolved difficulties in assessing turbulent air flow the resulted in the measurement device. The current project would involve solving this problem and developing software to replace that which has been written in now archaic language to facilitate the clinical application of air flow assessment. Programs written for Windows environments would be more desired than those that are DOS-based.
Project 3: Upgrading of a timing system for endoscope sterilization & removal from cleaning solution after a fixed time...
|Dr. A. B. Brill (Radiology)
|Paul H King||1)Develop a training database/software system to enable
professors to link names and faces quickly...(Quickcam based...)
2)Develop an image archiving system that archives images to a central server for theft deterrence.
3)Put together a demo - local - BME 272 chat room with video and audio capabilities.
4)design and test a student scheduling system for advisees & profs
|Dr. David Kelso (Northwestern U)
|Lloyd.King@mcmail.vanderbilt.edu||We still need assistance with the charting system to further develop the ability to evaluate patient care problems specific to Dermatology as well as the ability to input voice recognition systems.|
|Marc (Shien-Fong) Lin
6301 Stevenson Center
|1. Real-time video-based defibrillation using wavefront
morphology and dynamics
2. Measuring depth and shape of tissue using 3-D video active ranging technique
3. Solenoidal inductive conductance meter for measuring counterion motion in quasicrystals of oriented, helical biopolymers
4. Application of semiconducting nanocrystals for optical modulation of transmembrane potentials in biological cells
|Ron Salomon, MD
Heather Crouch (Grad. Student)
|Assist in the development of an analysis system to correlate the EEG and CSF data collected from human volunteers...|
|Dr. Todd Giorgio
|I have a web-based project: development of a cell bioreactor simulation. Students could input bioreactor design parameters (volume, stirring speed, cell type, etc.) and get an output of cell growth, protein synthesis, etc. The students in BME 290b (biotechnology) would use this tool during spring 2000. All calcs would be done based on engineering models/correlations, some there would be engineering/realism built in. Probably suitable for one, perhaps for two students.|
|Dr. Joseph Bruner
|We need a halo irrigation ring for use during fetal surgery... see Dr King for details first before contact|
|Dr Terry Kopansky - Principal
Harris-Hillman Special Education School
|The following are requests
from two of our teachers regarding possible projects. From Gail Skipper:
I need a switch that would activate when pressed and then turn itself off after a set amount of time even if it was continuously touched. Then it would reactivate only if released and pressed again. I can find nothing commercially available that will do this. I have switches and timers but they won't turn off at all if continuously touched. Some students rest their hands on the switch and are not learning that they must do something in order to turn on the toy.
I also need a switch with a delay (about three seconds) before the toy is activated. This is for a student who bangs at the switch continuously.
We could use some adaptations to swing motor made by bio-med students two years ago.
From Irene Lowe:
We could use an adjustable tray with side pieces (wings) (to keep arms inside). The tray needs to adjust height and angle--to fit feeder seat.
Another project--a small motor installed under a vestibular board to make it rock intermittently.
|Terry.Day@mcmail.vanderbilt.edu||I just completed an invention for surgery but have several other ideas that could be put to use. I will contact you when I reach my new location (Director, Head and Neck Oncologic Surgery at MUSC in Charleston) or feel free to contact me or any students that are interested in instruments used in head and neck cancer surgery.|
|1) Design an implantable, respiratory responsive phrenic nerve
2) Design an algorithm to perform continuous, epilepsy seizure monitoring that can be connected to a subdural grid electrode array and provide a real-time event marker (i.e. - the seizure is either beginning or not).
|L. Jackson Roberts, II, MD,
Professor of Pharmacology and Medicine,
Division of Clinical Pharmacology
|Theodore Pincus, M.D.Professor of Medicine
|We need ..."A simple data-management system for a doctor's office." ... we have an Access-based system, which can perform many of the MEDLOG functions as a simple "generic" data management system, analogous to Quicken for bookkeeping. However, our system is too slow and not menu-driven enough for general use.... (See King for full text)|
|Michael.Smith@mcmail.vanderbilt.edu||... a clinical telemedicine project in which we hope to deliver consultative care remotely. This requires a store-and-forward desktop platform using secure internet access. We have developed software to accomplish the task, but may need fine tuning. The software uses a relational database with graphic interface so we can transmit both data and images simultaneously. The compression algorithm is JPEG (Dermatology/Family Medicine)|
|Dr Benjamin Johnson||I have two software design projects that may fit your needs: The first is a opioid (narcotic) conversion program, that will assist physicians in calculating drug dosages from one narcotic to another, using recognized drug conversion formulas. The second is more complex, and allows us to code our Evaluation and Management (E/M) codes more effectively, by allowing us to enter in historical and physical examination data, and displaying the proper level of E/M coding information. (Note - I consider this one project (King))|
|... to devise a "balloon that could be inserted into the pericardium from a small sub-xyphoid incision under local anesthesia. The balloon assist device would have multi-chambers and would be triggered by the ECG. One could use it for very large hearts and adjust resting volume to gradually shrink the dilated ventricles. Over time, one might even see some improvement in LV function. The device could be removed again under local anesthesia. Do you have anyone who might want to work on such a device?|
|Bill Richards & Alan Bradshaw||Development of Intraoperative Recording Device for Assessment of Bowel
(I have a very extensive writeup from the proposers that I will gladly share - in person - with any student interested. The information contained therein is not for web posting...)
|DENNIS.HALLAHAN@mcmail.vanderbilt.edu||Radiation Oncology is a great format for the senior design projects, projects will be discussed and will be forthcoming...|
|Samuel.Hunter@mcmail.vanderbilt.edu||1) Design, implementation and assessment of algorithms to digitally
model central nervous system white matter development and regeneration
2) Design and
testing of image processing and analysis algorithms to count and classify oligodendrocytes
by developmental age in thin plastic sections of optic nerve and retina.
(Vanderbilt U. Stallworth Center) and email@example.com
(Kevin Robinson, Belmont U.)
|The Vanderbilt Stallworth Rehabilitation Hospital would be interested in
participating again as a site for student projects. Some ideas for projects
here at present include:
1. Modify a standard riding lawnmower, owned by a
patient, for hand controls so the man-of-the-house who has paraplegia can mow the lawn
|1) Second generation optical spectroscopy system design: This project is a
subset of this larger project where this system will be used for brain tumor margin
demarcation. This system requires a LabView controlled microshutter to alternate between 2
different light sources for serial spectral acquisition. The project entials the design
and building of such a device as well LabView programming required to control it. A EE/BME
double major would be preferred.
2) Confocal Raman Spectroscopy for bacterial identification: A confocalRaman system needs to be designed and built. The system will have to be tested using some phanom tissue samples. A student who has taken BME 258would be preferred.
3) Identification of biochemical composition of sample from their Raman spectrum: Given a Raman spectrum from biological sample, software needs to be developed that will identify the peaks in the spectra and correlate each peak to their associated bond - molecule - compound with the sample. A student with prograaming skills is preferred.
I would like to talk to the student before I approve their working on any of these projects.
Paul Harris, PhD, GCRC
|Project #1: GCRC Study Database Wizard: The General
Clinical Research Center (GCRC) facilitates patient-oriented research for many medical
disciplines. Scientific protocols are diverse and often very different in scope and
duration. However, there always exists a need to record and organize data from each
study. I propose a database "Wizard" computer program that will create a
customized database application for new GCRC protocols. I have written a version of
this "Wizard" in Microsoft Access, but I want to expand the application to
include better user interface support and also allow for creation of a web-based
application. The interested student should be familiar with or be willing to learn
the following computer software programs /languages: MS-Access, MS-Visual Basic,
HTML, Allaire Cold Fusion.
Project #2: Ultrasound Image Analysis Tool: The General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) has a computer program that facilitates measurement of brachial artery diameter from ultrasound images. I would like to further develop this program by adding digital image filter capabilities and an auto-detection routine to ensure clean non-biased measurements. The interested student should be familiar with or be willing to learn the following computer software programs / languages: MS Access, MS Visual Basic, MS C++.
|Thomas Doyle, M.D., Pediatric Cardiology
|NASA, 1999 announcement||(1.) evaluating "the effects of stressors (e.g., workload, isolation,
sleep loss, etc.) on physiological function,"
(2.) "the development of non-invasive diagnostic tests as well as autonomous and semi-autonomous patient monitoring systems with low false positive alarm rates,"
(3.) "small and power efficient real-time monitoring devices of known space craft toxins,"
(4.) "medical and surgical techniques, procedures, and systems ... required to diagnose and treat illnesses and injuries that may occur in space,"
(5.) "the development of non-invasive imaging systems that may be used to image bone, internal organs, and soft tissues" -- High priority!
(6.) "Medical information systems that support the onboard medical provider,"
(7.) Medical education for both physician and non-physician crew medical officers, especially in the area of "new training paradigms such as virtual reality,"
(8.) "the development of space flight treatment capabilities for acute medical and surgical emergencies,"
(9.) and many, many more technology-related areas.
|Dr. Doris Quinn firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Dennis.Stokes@mcmail.vanderbilt.edu||(1) I need a good graduate student/faculty person in bioengineering
willing to help me devise a simple device to deliver a stream of very small enzyme
capsules ("tiny time capsules," similar to what you would see in a cold tablet)
into the feeding tube of cystic fibrosis patients who are receiving continuous nighttime
feedlings by a gastrostomy tube (a small tube into the stomach). These patients lack
pancreatic enzymes to digest their food and we usually just give them a handful of
capsules to take before they start their feedings or have them wake up in the middle of
the night to take more...this is not an option in some of the younger patients
who cannot swallow the capsules. I would envision
something that would be connected to a 'Y" connection into the feeding tube,
mechanically driven (and microprocessor controlled?) but small enough to not add
complexity to their nighttime equipment. We can probably get some startup funds from
one of the companies that makes the enzymes and there could be (limited) commercial
value. Any suggestions?
|email@example.com||sponsored a catheter project last year, will sponsor a topic again this term ... TBA|
|Dr. Duco Jansen||
|John R. Smart, III, D. O., M.S.P.H.
Assistant Medical Director
Clover Bottom Developmental Center
231-5000 Ext. 4471
| Clover Bottom Developmental Center is a 300 bed state institution
for the Mentally Retarded. Most of these individuals have numerous medical problems. About
50, have enteral feeding tubes for nutrition, due to severe dysphagia.
Chronic management of these tubes reveals inherent problems with their design, in long term use. These include displacement, skin breakdown, tube blockage and persistent problems of continued years of pulmonary aspiration for the patient.
Our experience indicates that a combination jejunostomy/gastrostomy tube has promise in alleviating some of these difficulties (if some modifications could be done).
We would appreciate if someone were interested in tackling this problem.