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Inflatable, Shape-Changing Spinal Implants Could Help Treat Severe Pain

Medical Xpress

Photo: University of Cambridge

medicalxpress.com

A team of engineers and clinicians has developed an ultra-thin, inflatable device that can be used to treat the most severe forms of pain without the need for invasive surgery.

The device, developed by researchers at the University of Cambridge, uses a combination of soft robotic fabrication techniques, ultra-thin electronics and microfluidics.

The device is so thin—about the width of a human hair—that it can be rolled up into a tiny cylinder, inserted into a needle, and implanted into the epidural space of the spinal column, the same area where injections are ...