Predicting the risk of hip fracture in fragile elders
Supervisor: Professor Marco Viceconti

Worldwide approximately 1.6 million elders each year fracture their hip after a low-energy fall; by 2050 this number could reach between 4.5 million and 6.3 million. Roughly 25% of the elders who experience a hip fracture die of related complications in the following 12 months, and another third remains severely impaired. Current clinical methods can identify the patients with the highest risk of fracture with an accuracy of 70-75%, which degrades to only 60% if we exclude the patients with most severe osteoporosis, for whom the risk is much higher. But a hip fracture is essentially a mechanical event, where the strength of the bone can be estimated using subject-specific computer models, and the force produced by the fall can be modelled as a stochastic process. The PhD candidate will join Prof Viceconti research team and will contribute to the development of biomechanical simulator of hip fracture.

Previous experience / requirements: good understanding of solid mechanics and finite element analysis

For more information contact: m.viceconti@sheffield.ac.uk