University of Michigan Ann Arbor

2016 BMEidea Second Prize Winner – $5,000

The team members:

Kyle Bettinger, MS, Biomedical Engineering
Kai Cortright, MS 2016, Biomedical Engineering
Kayla Curtis, MS 2016, Biomechanical Engineering
Scott Haber, MS 2016, Biomedical Engineering
Danika Rodrigues, MS Candidate, Biomedical Engineering


Dr. Jan Stegemann, University of Michigan – Ann Arbor

Summary of problem & solution:

A speculum is a two-billed instrument used to dilate an orifice in the body in order to allow inspection. This instrument is often used in gynecological procedures; however, during these procedures there has been a high rate of vaginal wall prolapse. An increased load on the wall, typically associated with obesity or multiparity, weakens the tissue and collapses the wall, which obstructs the view and access to the cervix. Current techniques used to to reduce vaginal wall prolapse are elementary and time consuming. Circulum is designed to provide circumferential support to reduce the occurrence of vaginal wall prolapse. The instrument uncoils and expands in diameter in order to dilate the canal while a handle can be turned to either narrow or widen the diameter. Circulum allows the clinician to maintain access to the cervix with minimal intervention after the initial dilation, helping clinicians make better diagnoses for diseases including cervical and endometrial cancer.

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