Millions of people in the UK suffer from a debilitating loss of manual function, which has a dramatic effect on quality of life. Biomechanical factors play a role in the progression and treatment of the conditions that cause these challenges. However, the complexity of the hand and wrist means that our understanding of these factors dramatically lags behind our understanding of the larger joints in the human body. To gain insight into the forces that pass through the musculoskeletal structures, bioengineers have long relied upon models to provide information that we cannot measure directly. In vitro physiological joint simulators were initially the tools of choice; however, in silico musculoskeletal models have rapidly gained ground in recent years. Both techniques have their benefits and my research group is working to gain the best from both in an effort to improve our understanding of the hand and wrist. I will discuss our current work in both areas and describe how we hope to apply these to address questions posed by our clinical colleagues in surgery and rehabilitation.
Biography: Angela Kedgley is a Lecturer in Biomechanics in the Department of Bioengineering at Imperial College London. She obtained her PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Western Ontario in Canada in 2009. She then obtained a postdoctoral fellowship from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, which enabled her to work at the University of British Columbia. In 2011 she moved to the United Kingdom, working first as a Research Associate and then obtaining one of the prestigious Imperial College Research Fellowships. In 2015 she joined the department as a Lecturer. Her research interests broadly encompass the mechanics of joint motion in the human body and take an inter-disciplinary approach to developing new understanding of how we can more effectively diagnose and treat joint pathologies. Her most recent work is focussed on the hand and wrist. Angela is a Chartered Engineer, a member of the Institutes of Mechanical Engineering and Physics and Engineering in Medicine, and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.