Name: Richard E. Debski, Ph.D.
Title: Associate Professor, Department of Bioengineering

Professional Summary:
Richard E. Debski has been a part of the MSRC family since 1991 when he joined the research center as a graduate student. Dr. Debski received both his B.S. (1991) and Ph.D. (1997) in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh. Currently, he is an Associate Professor in the Department of Bioengineering and serves as the Co-Director of the Shoulder Dynamics Laboratory as well as the Director of the Robotics Group. He also participates in the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

The primary goal of the Shoulder Dynamics Laboratory is the study of shoulder instability - specifically, the structure and function of the ligaments and joint capsules at the glenohumeral and acromioclavicular joints. Experimental and computational analyses have been performed to examine the properties of the ligaments and joint capsules, determine ligament forces and joint kinematics, and evaluate the effect of injuries and repair procedures on joint motion. Novel experimental techniques such as a robotic/UFS testing system and Dynamic Shoulder Testing Apparatus rev.4 are utilized to examine these research questions.

Educational Background:
Research Assistant Professor, University of Pittsburgh 1997-1998
Ph.D. Mechanical Engineering, University of Pittsburgh 1997
B.S. Mechanical Engineering, University of Pittsburgh 1991

MSRC Research Group:
Shoulder Dynamics Laboratory
Robotics Group

Lab Contact Info:
Musculoskeletal Research Center
405 Center for Bioengineering
300 Technology Drive
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Telephone: 412-648-1638
Fax: 412-648-2001

Research Interests:
  • Experimental and computational examination of shoulder and knee biomechanics
  • Shoulder stability
  • Improvement of diagnoses and repair procedures for injuries to the ligaments and capsules at the shoulder
  • Knee stability during kneeling
  • Robotic technology for biomechncial testing
  • Computer aided orthopaedic surgery
Moore SM, Thomas M, Gabriel MT, Kilger R, Woo SL-Y, Debski RE: "A Novel Methodology to Reproduce Previously Recorded Six-Degree Of Freedom Kinematics on the Same Diarthrodial Joint", Journal of Biomechanics, 39:1914-1923,2006.

Konrad GG, Jolly JT, Labriola JE, McMahon PJ, Debski RE: "Thoracohumeral Muscle Activity Alters Glenohumeral Joint Biomechnics During Active Elevation", Journal of Orthopaedic Research, 24:748-756, 2006.

Darcy SP, Kilger RHP, Woo SL-Y, Debski RE: "Estimation of ACL Forces by Reproducing Knee Kinematics Between Sets of Knees: A Novel Non-Invasie Methodology,"Journal of Biomechanics, 39:2371-2377, 2006.

Ellis BJ, Debski RE, Moore SM, McMahon PJ, Weiss JA: "Methodology and Sensivity Studies for Finite Element Modeling of the Inferior Glenohumeral Ligament Complex" Journal of Biomechanics, 40:603-612, 2007.

Stehle J, Moore SM, Alaseirlis DA, Debski RE, McMahon PJ: "Acromial Morphology: Effects of Suboptimal Radiographs", Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery, 16:135-142.

Musahl V, Moore SM, McMahon PJ, Debski RE: "Orientation Feedback during Simulaed Simple Translation Tests has Little Clinical Significance on the Magnitude and Precision of Glenohumeral Joint Translations", Knee Surgery Sports Traumatology, Arthoroscopy, 14:1194-1199, 2006.

Konrad GG, Markmiller M, Jolly JT, Ruter AE, Sudkamp NP, McMahon PJ, Debski RE: "Decreasing Glenoid Inclincation Improves Function in Shoulders with simulated Massive Rotator Cuff Tears", Clinical Biomechanics, 21:942-949, 2006.

Konrad GG, Sudkamp NP, Kreuz PC, Jolly JT, McMahon PJ, Debski RE: "Pectoralis major tendon transfers above or underneath the conjoint tendon in subscapularis deficient shoulders: An in vitro biomechncial analysis", Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery-American, 89:2477-2484, 2007.

Moore SM< Stehle JH, Rainis EJ, McMahon PJ, Debski RE: "The Current Anatomical Description of the Inferior Glenohumeral Ligament Does Not Correlate With its Functional Role", Journal fo Orthopaedic Research, 26: 1598-1604, 2008.

Rainis EJ, Maas SA, Henninger HB, McMahon PJ, Weiss JA, Debski RE: "Material Properties Of the Axillary Pouch Of The Glenohumeral Capsule: Is Isotropic Material Symmetry appropriate?", Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, 131:031007, 2009.

Personal Information:

Hobbies/Sports: Basketball, football and running, Calvin & Hobbes, Drum Corps, Genesis

Family: (Spouse/Children) Mandy (wife), Riley (daughter)

Home Country: USA