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Reducing variation in hip replacement outcomes: understanding psoas tendon impingement


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Key facts

Type of research degree
Application deadline
Sunday 31 July 2022
Country eligibility
UK only
Source of funding
Doctoral training partnership
Professor Sophie Williams
Additional supervisors
Dr Alison Jones, Professor Graham Isaac, Professor Tim Board
School of Mechanical Engineering
Research groups/institutes
Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering
<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Summary</h2>

Total hip replacement (THR) is a successful operation but the number of devices requiring revision is continuing to rise. Up to 40% of patients report persistent pain after their surgery, and a cause is soft tissue impinging (specifically the iliopsoas tendon) against the replaced joint which can occur in around 5% of cases. Effective treatment is usually further surgery, consisting of release or resection of the iliopsoas tendon, alone or in combination with re-positioning the hip replacement cup to reduce the impingement. Some evidence suggests that there is a link between cup size and position, an individual patient&rsquo;s bony anatomy and posture, and symptomatic psoas impingement. The aims of this study are to determine how an acetabular component can be positioned to avoid psoas impingement, given the anatomy and posture of an individual. This project is co-funded by a major implant manufacturer, and will address an issue of relevance to both clinicians and industry to ensure the outcomes of hip replacement surgery for all patients are optimal. Additionally, the project will be co-supervised by an orthopaedic surgeon to provide a clinical perspective. The project will involve characterising the relationship between bony and soft tissue anatomy (using cadaveric and imaging facilities in our laboratories) relating to psoas impingement and posture in a range of subjects, then developing a new computational model to define the wrapping path of the psoas tendon for use in predicting impingement. There will be opportunities to compare characterisation and modelling with an existing clinical data set of patients with symptomatic psoas impingement after hip replacement. The project outcomes will provide evidence for surgical recommendations on component selection and position for different patients to avoid psoas impingement. The successful candidate should have experience in engineering and computing methods, including image analysis and finite element methods, and be interested in applying these techniques to a clinical problem. You will need to be competent at programming, preferably with experience of Matlab. During the project, you may have to handle and image human cadaveric tissue specimens. Full training will be provided on all laboratory methods and the associated health and safety requirements. There will be opportunities to be involved in wider activities organised by the institute, including public and patient engagement events, and bespoke training for careers in the medtech sector. You will be encouraged to participate in activities with our industry partner, including secondments, and to present at international conferences.

<h2 class="heading">How to apply</h2>

<p>Formal applications for research degree study should be made online through the&nbsp;<a href="">University&#39;s website</a>. Please state clearly in the Planned Course of Study section that you are applying to <em><strong>PHD Mechanical Engineering FT</strong></em> and in the research information section&nbsp;that the research degree you wish to be considered for is <em><strong>Reducing variation in hip replacement outcomes: understanding psoas tendon impingement</strong></em>&nbsp;as well as <a href="">Professor Sophie Williams</a>&nbsp;as your proposed supervisor.</p> <p>If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (below).</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">Entry requirements</h2>

Applicants to research degree programmes should normally have at least a first class or an upper second class British Bachelors Honours degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate discipline. The criteria for entry for some research degrees may be higher, for example, several faculties, also require a Masters degree. Applicants are advised to check with the relevant School prior to making an application. Applicants who are uncertain about the requirements for a particular research degree are advised to contact the School or Graduate School prior to making an application.

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">English language requirements</h2>

The minimum English language entry requirement for research postgraduate research study is an IELTS of 6.0 overall with at least 5.5 in each component (reading, writing, listening and speaking) or equivalent. The test must be dated within two years of the start date of the course in order to be valid. Some schools and faculties have a higher requirement.

<h2 class="heading">Funding on offer</h2>

<p>A highly competitive EPSRC Doctoral Training Partnership Studentship consisting of the award of fees with a maintenance grant of &pound;16,062 in session 2022/23 for 3.5 years.</p> <p>This opportunity is open to UK applicants only as the international position has now been filled.&nbsp; All candidates will be placed into the EPSRC Doctoral Training Partnership Studentship Competition and selection is based on academic merit.<br /> <br /> Please refer to the&nbsp;<a href="">UKCISA</a>&nbsp;website for&nbsp;information regarding Fee Status for Non-UK Nationals starting from September/October 2021.</p>

<h2 class="heading">Contact details</h2>

<p>For further information about your application, please contact Doctoral College Admissions: e:&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href=""></a></p> <p>For further information about this project, please contact Professor Sophie&nbsp;Williams: e: <a href=""></a>&nbsp;</p>

<h3 class="heading heading--sm">Linked funding opportunities</h3>