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Traumatic Limb and Muscle Loss Clinical Trials

Loss of muscle and tissue following a traumatic injury can often lead to severe disability, loss of mobility in the damaged area, or amputation.

While current medical procedures can do a lot to reconstruct these injuries, UPMC researchers and surgeons consistently strive to find better ways to restore muscles and tendons. One new method — muscle tendon tissue unit repair and reinforcement (MTURR) reconstructive surgery — is leading the way.

What is MTURR Surgery?

This reconstructive surgery procedure utilizes a groundbreaking technology, called an extracellular matrix, to help repair and regrow damaged muscle and tissue.

The matrix, once implanted, provides a structural framework to:

  • Strengthen and reinforce the repair of muscle tendons.
  • Support the growth of new tissue and blood vessels to the injured area.

How Does the Extracellular Matrix Work?

Almost immediately, the body begins to break down the matrix, which consists largely of collagen and other proteins.

By degrading into smaller compounds, the matrix begins recruiting stem cells from other parts of the body to the damaged area. These stem cells then become muscle cells, promoting the growth of new muscle and tissue.

Are These MTURR Trials Right for You?

The MTURR reconstructive surgery technique can be beneficial for the thousands of veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars who have been maimed by explosives and have lost a significant amount of muscle from an arm or a leg. The trial is also open to civilians who experience a severe injury involving loss of muscle and tissue.

Military or civilian men and women, 18 to 65 years of age, may be eligible to participate in the trials:

The Limb Salvage and Regenerative Medicine Initiative and the Muscle Tendon Tissue Unit Repair and Reinforcement (MTURR) Reconstructive Surgery Research study is collaboratively managed by the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research & Engineering, Rapid Fielding Directorate and the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Manufacturing Technology Program. The Initiative is focused on rapidly and safely transitioning advanced medical technology in commercially viable capabilities to provide our wounded warriors the safest and most advanced care possible today.

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