University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences (SHRS) staff recently obtained $7.5 million in grant funding from a Department of Defense program to enhance care for active duty personnel and veterans.
Military service personnel's health care needs encompass certain stressors, both physical and mental, so the Defense Department's Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs allotted financial support to three projects to study specific needs common among military personnel: cognitive health, knee surgery recovery and prosthetic issues, according to a press release.
Bradley Nindl, SHRS professor and director of the university's Neuromuscular Research Laboratory, and Anne Germain, associate professor of psychiatry at the Pitt School of Medicine and director of the Sleep and Behavioral Neuroscience Center, were granted $2.5 million to study mental readiness and flexibility among military service members, the release said.
James Irrgang, chair of the SHRS physical therapy department, and Dr. Volker Musahl, chief of sports medicine in the orthopedic surgery department, received $4.5 million to explore the consequences of surgery and post-operative rehabilitation timing for those recovering from severe knee injuries.
Finally, SHRS assistant professor of prosthetics and orthotics Goeran Fiedler received $500,000 to study temperature control material for use with prosthetics to accommodate circulation and temperature changes in prosthetic socket sites, the release said.
“We are honored to use our expertise to advance health care and quality of life for those who have so valiantly served our country,” David Brienza, SHRS associate dean of research, said in the release. “These three projects fill critical research needs and stand to make a tremendous difference in the lives of our country’s military personnel.”