Top Sector Life Sciences & Health (LSH) entails a broad scope of disciplines, from pharmaceuticals to medical technology and from healthcare infrastructure to vaccination. To realise its mission – vital citizens in a healthy economy - the Top Sector builds on the strengths of the Dutch LSH sector to address the biggest societal challenges in prevention, cure and care. By funding multidisciplinary public-private partnerships (PPPs) the Top Sector aims to facilitate innovation. Here we give an overview of  a number of funded R&D projects by Top Sector LSH. The page is updated continuously.

Ultrasonography to assess muscle loss in patients with major burns

Ultrasonography to assess loss of skeletal muscle mass in patients with major burns: UMBO

In patients with major burns severe muscle loss often occurs, which compromises functioning and quality of life. The aim is to make assessment of muscle loss and recovery possible and practical for patients with major burns, using ultrasonography, in particular the BodyMetrix ultrasonography system.

Nowadays more patients survive more severe burns. This positive development however, is accompanied by a problem: loss of muscle, which is a major threat to functioning and quality of life of burn survivors. Given the severity of the condition, assessment of muscle status requires methods that are easy to perform by health care professionals in complex health care settings, non-invasive for the patient, and easy to clean because of high infection risk. Until now, its assessment was complex, if at all possible, in this population. Thus knowledge on loss and recovery of muscle (size and quality) is scarce which in turn hampers the development and evaluation of interventions to counteract muscle loss and support recovery, like adequate nutrition and (early) mobilisation. 

Ultrasonography does have potential to assess muscles in patients with major burns, the BodyMetrix ultrasonography system in particular, being a non-invasive, practical, cheap and accessible method to assess muscles. With this project, we aim to make assessment of muscle mass with BodyMetrix possible, and investigate its feasibility, validity and reliability in patients with major burns. If validity and reliability are sufficient, muscle size and quality and recovery over time will be evaluated.

This project will provide us the necessary assessment method to gain fundamental insights in the process of muscle wasting and recovery, evaluate (new) treatments, and will thus potentially contribute to improving the outcome of patients with major burns.