Mechanical properties of mechanical actuator for treating ischemic stroke

Melodie F. Metzger, Thomas S. Wilson, Daniel Schumann, Dennis L Matthews, Duncan J. Maitland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

137 Scopus citations


In this paper a novel shape memory polymer (SMP) microactuator for treating ischemic stroke is introduced. This device provides a new treatment modality that could enable significant improvements in therapeutic stroke outcomes, ultimately improving mortality rates and decreasing morbidity, thereby reducing the cost of rehabilitation and improving the quality of life. Using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and dynamic mechanical thermal analysis (DMTA) to define the thermo-mechanical behavior of SMP, we provide useful information about the polymer structure, conditions for device actuation, and an estimate of the recovery forces the device is capable of delivering during the transition between it's straight and coiled shape. In addition, experimental determination of the maximum amount of pressure and force against which the microactuator coil can hold a clot is reported. The results of these tests establish that the device can successfully hold a clot against forces and pressures well above those expected in physiological systems for clot extraction, rendering it as an exciting new technology for treating ischemic stroke.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)89-96
Number of pages8
JournalBiomedical Microdevices
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Microactuator
  • Shape memory polymer
  • Stroke treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Genetics
  • Neuroscience(all)


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