SE PhD Prospectus Defense of Adam Sonnenberg

  • Starts: 2:00 pm on Thursday, October 19, 2017
  • Ends: 4:00 pm on Thursday, October 19, 2017
TITLE: Particles in the Lungs and Tumors in the Ear: Improving Patient Outcome Through Strategic Intervention

ABSTRACT: The proposed research aims to analyze the effectiveness of current medical practices and offer possible solutions to further optimize patient outcomes. Two main medical issues are addressed: particle deposition in the lung and the effectiveness of MRI’s for diagnosing tumors in the ears, acoustic neuromas.

First, the lungs have long been considered a desired route for medication delivery but there is still a lack of strategies to target the delivery sites of medication in the lung. Furthermore, no standardized system has been proposed to quickly and rapidly test different strategies and how they alter the overall deposition pattern in their structures. A symmetric deposition model is proposed to understand how ventilation strategies alter drug delivery.

A second asymmetric model will be developed to better represent actual structure of the lungs and ventilation strategies will be verified to work in both symmetric and asymmetric structures. In tandem animal experiments to accurately represent real biological systems will be developed to create a full platform for understanding particle deposition.

Finally, whenever a patient presents with asymmetric sensorineural hearing loss (ASNHL), there can be concern that the patient has an acoustic neuroma (AN), sometimes known as a vestibular schwannoma, on the side with worse hearing. In a recent review of electronic medical records (EMR) of 1891 patients that fit widely accepted criteria for ASNHL or were labeled as ASNHL in the EMR, a Bayesian Heuristic approach for discrete stochastics was used to develop a statistical model that could be utilized to estimate the probability of a patient having an AN based on his or her symptoms.

COMMITTEE: Advisor: Bela Suki, BME; Ken Lutchen, BME; Hua Wang, SE/ME; Michael Caramanis, SE/ME; Ascânio Araújo, Physics, Universidade Federal do Ceará

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