Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



First Advisor

Shane Cotter

Second Advisor

Amy Loya

Third Advisor

Jennifer Currey


K-wire, x-ray image, differentiation, 3D print, Radiation, Bone Fixation, Comminuted fracture


Kirschner Pins, known as K-wires, are smooth sharp stainless steel pins used in the field of orthopedics to stabilize bone fracture fragments in their correct position until they have fully healed. K-wires are most commonly used for comminuted metaphyseal fractures of the long bones, and fractures of smaller bones such as the phalanges. The wires are inserted into bone via a drill and the ends of the wire are bent and left outside of the body for easy removal once the bone has healed. The surgeon uses x-ray images to guide K-wire insertion, ensure proper internal alignment, and determine if any adjustments need to be made. The identical and 2D appearance of the K-wires on x-ray images presents orthopedic surgeons with a challenge of identifying, within the surgical site, the correct K-wires to adjust during surgery. This leads to unnecessary radiation exposure for the patient and longer procedures. We are designing a K-wire attachment to be used by the surgeon that gives each K-wire a unique appearance on the x-ray so that each wire can be identified from different imaging angles. Overall, our device will decrease the number of x-rays that need to be taken during surgery, thereby increasing the safety and efficiency of bone reconstruction surgeries. By creating a temporary attachment to be applied by the surgeon, both the number of x-rays and amount of time in surgery will be decreased.



Rights Statement

No Known Copyright