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Say Goodbye To Back Pain

One of our first ever projects was the 'Tri-Stimuli - Chronic Back Pain Relief Device'.

Our directors Brian and Seán invented this novel device when based in Trinity College Dublin with the help of Enterprise Ireland through their commercialisation grant scheme.

Brian fractured two vertebrae when he was younger and deals with chronic lower back pain on a daily basis. He was acutely aware of the shortcomings in finding effective long term relief from chronic lower back pain and used his experience to develop the Tri-Stimuli device with help from the Trinity College anatomy department. The device itself used a novel technique developed by theCADlab team that had never been seen before in the medical device industry.

The project was a brilliant example of an iterative design process. Seán used his electronics expertise to develop numerous working prototypes that would randomly deliver 3 different pain relieving stimuli into the user's back with the aim to directly tackle the adaptation of the central nervous system to pain relieving stimulus. Brian then evaluated each design using a range of experimental techniques to further the device's design along to the finished prototype. These evaluations involved monitoring the heat change in the back when using the device's heating function, evaluating the frequencies delivered by the device to the back using it's vibration function and measuring the pressure experienced in the back by the pressure application function of the device. Below are some of the photos from the design development process.

A key obstacle of this project was bringing the device from a bulky, research orientated prototype to a streamlined, user friendly prototype to test with user groups in St. James' Hospital which was the goal of the project.

Seán designed a series of test circuits in the same iterative fashion as the prototypes, each more compact than the last before designing and manufacturing the finished control board which would carry out all the functionality that was needed. It was a fraction of the size and used smart phone connectivity rather than the testing control module. Below are some images from the electronic development phase of the project.

The project was concluded following the development of this fully functioning prototype. It acts as a great example of the design process and the capability of our team. The idea was initially drawn up on a scrap piece of paper, 3D design and rapid prototyping helped it secure initial investment, that investment funded the research and development of a working prototype and a significant amount of funding was then made available for a two year trial and development project.

If you have any questions with regards to this project or anything mentioned in this blog please don't hesitate to send us an email!

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