The research interests of David F. Kallmes, M.D., center on advancing the minimally invasive treatment options for patients with intracranial saccular aneurysms. Dr. Kallmes' preclinical laboratory is developing and testing multiple improvements to the microcoil technology used to treat this condition. His team is also involved in multiple clinical trials of aneurysm treatments, including the use of modified coils, as well as magnetic resonance imaging of aneurysms after treatment.
An additional area of focus is osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures. Dr. Kallmes' research in this area is funded by the National Institutes of Health and complements his clinical practice.
- Cerebral aneurysms. The technologies being developed and tested in Dr. Kallmes' laboratory to treat cerebral aneurysms include polymer coatings, stents, liquid agents and tissue engineering. The tissue engineering approach uses stem cells, harvested from blood or fat, which can be placed on the coils prior to implantation. After implantation, the stem cells populate the aneurysm and help permanently occlude the aneurysm.
- Osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures. Dr. Kallmes' clinical practice includes the use of vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty for treatment of painful osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures. His research in this area includes a trial of vertebroplasty by itself as well as multiple other trials of both vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty.
Significance to patient care
Historically, cerebral aneurysms were treated with open surgery. Platinum microcoils were developed and are routinely used to treat aneurysms, but often fail to result in permanent closure. Dr. Kallmes' research is aimed at improving long-term rates of aneurysm occlusion. Likewise, his research on osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures works toward the development of new, more-effective treatment options.