University helping quake victims who lost limbs - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

University helping quake victims who lost limbs

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - The devastation in Haiti has left countless victims with traumatic injuries to their limbs, and an East Texas university is trying to work out details on how they can use their technology to help those who have lost limbs.

Longview's LeTourneau University's LEGS prosthetic program has been successfully administered in other third world countries, giving amputees freedom of movement.

Earthquake victims suffering broken or lost legs could be fitted with the prosthetic, but, most important, LeTourneau engineers say it could be made by locals, so that they could help their own.

"The knee that we've manufactured is a low cost item designed to be made by a local clinic with relatively simple tools that they can put together themselves," explained Associate Professor Stephen Ayers, with LeTourneau University's Mechanical Engineering department. "They can support it themselves rather than rely on us for a continued hand out."

Details have yet to be worked out on how and when Haiti assistance will the possible.

The LEGS program began five years ago when undergraduate engineering students developed a low-cost, maintenance-free knee design that could be manufactured for about $15.

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