Lower Limb Amputation Research Line:
Since 2011, Dr Dionne, as Primary Investigator, has received 2 research grants for studies which address otherwise healthy, working-age men with trans-tibial amputation from a traumatic event (TTAT). Despite great strides made in surgical procedures, prosthetic design, and rehabilitation, there is an extremely disproportionate number of adults with TTAT who are under- employed, unemployed or are not even part of the work force due to tissue injury experienced during work-related activity. In addition, there is an extreme paucity in our understanding of the appropriate timing and dosage of health care for those with TTAT who could otherwise fully participate in the Community. With our uniquely comprehensive and interdisciplinary approach, we are in the process of reaching the overarching objective of identifying the most appropriate intervention and preventative measures to promote sustained and active Community participation by individuals with amputation. We plan to seek national support for funding larger studies that will allow us to ultimately construct a diagnostic-intervention model for optimum surgical, rehabilitative, and prosthetic care with long-term follow-up. Once constructed, the model will be tested and include different groups of people with amputation (e.g., with amputation due to dysvascular or diabetic conditions, children with amputation, the elderly with amputation etc.) in larger studies.
Lumbar Disc Disease (LDD) Research Line:
Back pain is the most common condition treated by physical therapists in the outpatent setting. A specific composite of information (i.e., “patient profile”) is essential to classify LDD and direct appropriate care with optimal, cost-effective patient outcome. A comprehensive and multifaceted diagnostic model needs to be systematically developed and tested. In order to do so, Dr Dionne established a series of funded research projects, built upon one another, toward achieving this goal. Also essential to this research agenda, She has built very productive relationships with investigators across the OU campuses, within the State of Oklahoma, and internationally, from a wide variety of backgrounds (physical therapy/rehabilitation science, genetics, radiology, bone biology, neurosurgery, biostatistics) to form a translational, “bench-to-clinic” research team in order to address the complexities of this heterogeneous condition. To date, we have completed and are disseminating preliminary work towards constructing a compelling and innovative diagnostic model for subsequent development of an interventional framework for future study. One foundation grant (International Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy Research Foundation) has been funded to start January 1, 2013.