Limb injury causes by many reasons. This ranges from sports to manual labor to simple trips and falls. There are many ways to diagnose injured limbs. But those method takes a long time to cure. So, students from the College of Engineering, Pune (CoEP) have developed a patented hybrid orthopedic instant splint for injured limb.
This instant splint can be used as an instant plaster on a fractured limb. Once applied, it causes the broken bone to stay in normal position and avoid propagation of a crack. It also can be used as a first aid kit for emergencies.
This user-friendly splint is extremely light in weight. It is made up of a combination of plaster of Paris and paper pulp. Once applied, it remains hard for more than 24 hours. One just needs to deep it in water, squeeze and apply to an injured limb.
Students secure patent of splint while conducting field trials.
A researcher Mayur Sanas said, “The samples of the splints are being distributed to primary health centers and hospitals in the city for trials. We are trying to set up a manufacturing unit at CoEP for mass production.”
The previous method of applying plaster splint includes covering cotton around wet plaster splint and then solidify it in open air. Next, bandages are applied over the splint to fix it at the proper position. It involves two layers of cotton get mixed. Once the treatment is over, these splint is difficult to remove. In addition, it gets heavy, less durable and has poor strength to weight ratio. Fiberglass splint overcomes these drawbacks but is expensive. As compare to exiting fiberglass splints, this instant splint is lighter in weight and cheaper in cost. Yet, it provides the optimal bending stiffness.
In normal procedure, plastering the fractured area is cumbersome. The calcium keeps oozing out and there is a loss of material used. But this splint fits the shape quicker. In this case, it is not so.
Co-Investor Arati Mulay said, “The best part of this preventive tool is it is user-friendly and involves just three simple steps for usage. When a child falls and injures his/her hand and develops fracture in a school, the institution calls the child’s parents and wait for further action till they arrive. If school authorities wrap this splint instantly around the injured hand or leg in such cases, the limb would be immobilized in less time.”
When there is a fracture, at instant no immediate treatment available to aid. In such cases, this instant splint will be very useful but as a preventive action. It can prove handy in schools as well as rural areas because reaching hospitals in case of an injury takes some time from there.
Ashish Ranade, an orthopedic surgeon at Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital said, “This hybrid splint can be treated as an excellent first aid tool. It can be used instantly and for temporary stabilization at the scene of an accident on the fractured hand or leg.”
At Columbia Asia, the orthopedic department has received great feedback on the usage of the innovative instant splint.