1 Technical University of Sofia (BULGARIA)
2 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Traumatology of University of Thessalia (GREECE)
3 Meducal University Plovdiv (BULGARIA)
4 Institute of Biomechanics of Barcelona (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2015 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Pages: 6350-6355
ISBN: 978-84-606-5763-7
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 9th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 2-4 March, 2015
Location: Madrid, Spain
Osteoporosis is the most common cause of fractures, due to bone mass reduction and increased bone fragility. A significant increase of fracture cases is expected in the coming years as a result of population aging and increased life expectancy. In 2000 3,8 million fractures were registered in Europe due to osteoporosis. Associated public health expenditure was 32 billion euro and this expense is estimated to reach 77 billion in 2050. The incidence of lower limb fractures in traffic accidents is widely documented: in Europe, 4.5% of the individuals suffering from a car accident have a fractured femur. This translates to 90000 cases a year, of which 75% require surgical treatment. In 2008 fixation devices were used in approximately 420000 surgeries in Europe, associated with costs of more than 4,8 billion euro. A significant portion of these costs (15%, 720 million euro) depends on re-interventions that are necessary to address failures of surgical techniques, usually caused by errors in the diagnosis of the fracture, in the selection of implants or preoperative planning. The increasing demand coupled with the large number of failures of surgeries has caused the following problems in the field of orthopaedic surgery and traumatology:
- increased pressure by patients and patient organizations to improve quality and prevent errors;
- continuous introduction of new surgical techniques and implant models, many of them being not well known to surgeons;
- need of better trained professionals able to address the growing demand in the field.

Moreover, in Bulgaria and Greece there is no formal education in biomechanical engineering either education in biomechanics for orthopaedic residents and surgeons. To respond effectively to these increasingly stringent demands it is essential that surgeons, biomedical engineers and residents can count on one hand on the latest knowledge in the art of biomechanics and application of implants and on another hand to upgrade their education with the objective to refine and adapt surgical techniques.

The presented project is aimed at adapting and integrating innovative training courses and results from previous Osteoform project into continuing education of medicine professionals (residents, surgeons) and engineers involved in implants development and manufacturing. The project objectives are:
- Identifying and analysing the needs of biomedical labour market, of biomedical engineers, orthopaedic surgeons, managers, residents in the sector.
- Selecting and analysing the e-learning innovative content to meet these needs and upgrade the content with the new developments in the sector.
- Adapting, upgrading and implementing the Osteoform e-learning materials to the legal framework, training system, and language in Bulgaria and Greece and to the needs of the target groups in all partner countries.

The consortium consists of orthopaedic surgeons, experts in biomechanics, experts in educational technology and e-learning materials development, institutions providing continuing education for professionals in mechanical engineering and in orthopaedics.

The new courses allow medical students and residents to update and expand their knowledge of the biomechanics of fractures and fixation techniques, and engineering students to acquire knowledge that will result in improved design implants.
Higher education, orthopaedic surgeons, biomechanical engineering.