|By Shelly Palmer||
|April 19, 2014 10:10 PM EDT||
Old-fashioned casts are nasty, a festering stinksleeves that you wear like a medieval torture device for what seems like forever. 3D-printed casts take care of the smell and itch issues, and now Deniz Karasahin has designed the next step: a custom cast with an ultrasound device to speed up bone healing. Karasahin’s Osteoid is, obviously, just a design concept, winner of the 2014 Golden A’Design Award in the 3D-printed forms and product design category. But it’s based on sound science: low-intensity pulsed ultrasound (LIPUS) has been found to reduce bone healing time by nearly 40% with just one 20-minute treatment a day. The therapy has been tricky to administer, because it requires placing ultrasound leads on the skin directly over the bone injury. That’s impossible with an old-school plaster cast—but not with a 3D printed cast of the future. Since this is a design concept, you probably won’t find it in your emergency room anytime soon.