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8110 Gatehouse Road, Falls Church, VA 22042

3D rendering designed on computer

Inova Biomechanics Research Laboratory

Using Virtual Surgery to Customize and Improve Outcomes.

Biomechanics Research: Improving Patient Outcomes

Inova's unique Biomechanics Research Laboratory improves patient outcomes through advanced orthopedic research. Using virtual surgery technology to help physicians customize the best treatment solutions, the simulations are like a "test drive" of a surgical procedure before the patient and physician ever enter an operating room. The resulting information can dramatically improve outcomes for patients and makes this one-of-a-kind Northern Virginia research lab a leader in musculoskeletal biomechanics. 

The simulations are well suited to many orthopedic conditions, including:

  • Joint replacements
  • Traumatic bone injuries
  • Bone cancer
  • Chronic back and joint pain
  • Pediatric orthopedic problems

A surgeon planning to perform a total joint replacement, for example, can test a specific implant's performance under stress by simulating the patient's weight and activity level. This customized approach means even better results for patients and a faster return to normal activities.

Virtual Surgery Helps Narrow Choices

Surgeons can conduct "virtual surgery" on an orthopedic patient in advance of the actual procedure.

  1. The patient's CT or MRI scans form the foundation of a 3-D model of the damaged bone
  2. Software helps physicians evaluate which of several treatment options is best suited to the patient
  3. Software also simulates how the repaired bone or joint will respond to strain over time given the patient's own profile

Research Lab Also Includes Surgical Simulation and 3D Medical Printing

As part of the Thomas M. Fulcher Multidisciplinary Research Laboratory at Inova Fairfax Hospital (which also includes the Advanced Surgical Training and Education Center (ASTEC), our team also provides consultation and 3D printed medical devices for assistance with surgical procedures from a wide variety of specialties including transplant and neurosurgery.

The Goals of Inova Biomechanics Research Laboratory

  • To foster biomechanical and clinical research among orthopedic surgeons and help them to solve complex clinical problems
  • To apply the principles of mechanics and biology to understand basic mechanisms related to the structure and function of the musculoskeletal system
  • To design, analyze and develop bone-implant and prosthetic systems
  • To educate residents in performing independent, high-quality research in orthopedic biomechanics


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