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Choi among university's Baker Award winners

Jan. 31, 2013

JungHun Choi, assistant professor of mechanical engineering and a member of the biomedical engineering master's program faculty, is among six recipients of Baker Awards for the 2012-13 fall cycle. 

Choi's award of $11,200 will support the evaluation and enhancement of the Active Colonoscopy Training Model (ACTM), a technology developed by Choi that is under patent consideration in the U.S. and internationally.

Colonoscopy can be associated with many problems, such as mechanical trauma to the patient caused by the colonoscope contacting the colon wall or health issues related to the extended use of anesthesia. In order to eliminate these complications, an automatically adjustable colonoscope was designed. This device uses sensors, actuators, and a control system to automatically position the distal tip in the center of the colon lumen.

The colonoscope sheath has an exoskeleton structure of controllable stiffness and a highly flexible stem. The device saves the patient from trauma caused by the shaft of a colonoscope when it is guided from the anus to the end of the sigmoid colon. The sheath's presence helps avoid looping of the shaft of the colonoscope.

A colonoscopy training model is occasionally used, but the effects are minute due to the simple and tedious training procedures. To enhance the educational effect of the colonoscopy training model, the ACTM was developed. The ACTM can create the environment of a real colonoscopy procedure as closely as possible. The ACTM provides audio and visual interaction to the trainee by monitoring important factors, such as forces caused by the distal tip and the shaft of the colonoscope and the pressure to open up the lumen and the localization of the distal tip. On the computer screen display, the trainee can easily monitor the status of the colonoscopy, which includes the localization of the distal tip, maximum forces, pressure inside the colon, and the surgery time.

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