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Donal Mcnally
05-01-1998, 02:58 AM
BIOMECHANICS OF THE INTERVERTEBRAL DISC

Applications are invited for a University Postgraduate Scholarship in
the Department of Anatomy at the University of Bristol. Please apply,
before 8th May 1998, by submitting a curriculum vitae to Dr McNally.
Two of the possible Ph.D. projects are:


HYDRATION DYNAMICS OF THE INTERVERTEBRAL DISC

The aim of this research is to characterise the hydration dynamics of
the intervertebral disc using a fusion of experimental measurement on
cadaveric discs and simple physical models, and analytical mathematical
modelling. It will explain characteristic features of the internal
mechanical behaviour of discs that correspond to discogenic pain and
predisposition to acute injury. Similarly, it will explain how
degenerative changes in the composition of the disc contribute to
mechanical dysfunction and influence bulk movement of metabolites.


ULTRASOUND ANATOMY OF THE INTERVERTEBRAL DISC

The aim of this project is to develop ultrasound imaging of the
intervertebral disc for use as a diagnostic tool to provide a
relatively inexpensive, non-invasive means of quantifying disc
degeneration and injury. Further, since ultrasound imaging is directly
related to the mechanical properties of the tissues observed, it may
provide information about the mechanical behaviour of the disc. The
echogenic structure of intervertebral discs will be characterised in
vitro using conventional diagnostic imaging techniques. In particular
features of the ultrasonic appearance of discs that correspond to
degenerative changes and injury will be identified. Similarly , the
relationship between the mechanical behaviour of intact disc tissues
and their ultrasound images will be investigated. On completion of the
in vitro characterisation experiments the optimum method of imaging
discs will be determined in vivo. This will pave the way to use
ultrasound imaging of the disc as a diagnostic tool.


For more information or to apply contact:

Dr D.S. McNally

Department of Anatomy
University of Bristol
Southwell Street
Bristol BS2 8EJ
UK

Tel: +44 (0)117-928 8349
Fax: 44 (0)117-925 4794
E-Mail: D.S.McNally@bristol.ac.uk

----------------------
Donal McNally
d.s.mcnally@bristol.ac.uk

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