Invention Stops Bleeding in 15 SecondsCategory: Science & Technology
Posted: February 5, 2014 09:07PM
RevMedx, an Oregon-based startup of veterans, scientists, and engineers have asked the FDA to approve a device called XStat that could save numerous lives. It's a pocket-sized 30 millimeter diameter syringe that injects sponges into wounds. These sponges are created from wood pulp and coated with Chitosan, a blood-clotting antimicrobial substance, and work by creating enough pressure to stop even heavy bleeding quickly in as little as 15 seconds. There are X-shaped markers on every sponge so that they are visible on x-ray images to ensure that none would be left inside the body.
The idea was inspired by Fix-a-Flat foam which plugs holes in tires that are in need of repair. "That's what we pictured as the perfect solution: something you could spray in, it would expand and bleeding stops [...] I spent the whole war on terror in the Middle East, so I know what a medic needs when someone has been shot." says John Steinbaugh, a former U.S. Army Special Operations medic who joined the company in April 2012.
A medic must fill gauze into a cavity of a wounded soldier and apply direct pressure to stop bleeding from an artery. These wounds can be as deep as five inches and if bleeding hasn't stopped in three minutes, the medic has to pull out all the gauze and repeat the process. Very painful to the soldier and a time wasting procedure to the medic when minutes or mere seconds could lead to hemorrhage, a leading cause of death on the battlefield. Steinbaugh, who has been deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan has tended injuries and states, "Gauze bandages just don't work for anything serious" despite being the standard for gunshot and shrapnel injuries.
The U.S. Army believes so too as they contracted a $5 million deal for a finished product and attached a letter requesting expedited approval from the FDA for the XStat device. If approved, it would be the first dressing specifically created to treat deep, narrow wounds. This life saving medical device would likely be available for $100.
Source: Popular Science