Quantification of Shoulder Pathology and Manual Wheelchair Propulsion in Children and Adults with Spinal Cord Injury using Advanced Biomechanical Modeling and Diagnostic Imaging
This research is led by Dr. Brooke Slavens (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Principal Investigator), in collaboration with VCU'S REALab, and researchers and clinicians at Northwestern University and Shriners Hospitals for Children – Chicago
The wheelchair is one of the most widely used assistive mobility devices impacting more than 3.6 million people in the U.S. over the age of 15, 90% of whom use manual wheelchairs. Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a leading cause for wheelchair use. Wheelchair use has detrimental consequences to the health of the user, including shoulder pain and pathology. These complications significantly affect manual wheelchair users throughout their lifespan by reducing quality of life. To improve the quality of life of wheelchair users, there is a need for the prevention of shoulder pain and pathology in manual wheelchair users. This project aims to elucidate the contributing mechanisms of shoulder dysfunction in patients with pediatric-onset SCI and adult-onset SCI through knowledge of joint dynamics, pain, and pathology transitionally across children and adults.