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Asst. Prof. Erika Lewis, a hand therapist consultant in the Department of Physical Therapy, has been awarded a $150,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health for the first phase of a research project regarding “conformable” splints.
Lewis says a conformable splint is one in which the splint material is heated to custom-make it to fit the patient. The objective of the research, she says, is to produce a material that is easier and faster to work with, and is less expensive than materials currently being used.
“If these goals are achieved it could decrease the hand therapist’s time spent fabricating and adjusting splints in the clinic, resulting in an increased number of patients seen. My role as a hand specialist is to test the material in the clinic on subjects and conduct a survey of hand therapists to determine their opinions about the new material.”
Anna Galea of Infoscitex in Waltham is the principal investigator.