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Kidney Model Polymer: Developing a stable model for surgical simulation

Team Members

Arame Deme
Hon Sum Alastair Lee
Adrian McCalman
Tayfun Sahin


Melodie Lawton, Asst Professor of Chemical Engineering, UR


Simulation Innovation Lab, URMC


This project aims to improve the polymeric material used for kidney models for medical students’ use when learning to perform percutaneous-nephrolithotomy (PCNL) surgery. The objectives for the polymer were: transparency under IR light to a 15 cm depth, a Young’s Modulus (i.e. measure of stiffness) similar to an actual kidney, and minimization of water loss to preserve model size. The attempted solutions included optimizing the pre-existing procedure with original reagents, as well as experiments with tertiary crosslinking agents.

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