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Syringe Filled with Sponges Earns FDA Approval

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Janet Fang

Staff Writer

clockApr 6 2014, 19:22 UTC
615 Syringe Filled with Sponges Earns FDA Approval
RevMedx’s XSTAT device via U.S. Army
 
A couple months ago, we wrote about a simple device that could help gunshot victims by packing open wounds with lots of tiny sponges in seconds. It’s called XStat, and this first-of-its-kind wound dressing has just been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for military use
 
Since mid-World War II, nearly 50 percent of combat deaths have been due to exsanguinating hemorrhage, or bleeding out. Half of those deaths could have been prevented if timely, appropriate care had been available, according to the U.S. Army
 
Using the syringe-like applicator, compressed cellulose sponges with an absorbent coating can be applied directly into the wound. When they come in contact with blood, they rapidly expand and pack the wound cavity in about 20 seconds, placing enough pressure to stop blood flow while the patient is being transported. All the sponges have markers on them that can be detected using an X-ray for removal later. 
 
Up to three applicators may be used to stabilize the patient, each containing 92 pill-shaped sponges that are 9.8 millimeters in diameter and up to 5 millimeters in height. Each medical sponge absorb 3 milliliters of blood or other bodily fluid -- that’s almost a third of a liter per applicator. 
 
“This will be an important new treatment option for our nation’s military to treat injured soldiers who may not be in close proximity to a medical facility,” FDA’s Christy Foreman says in a news release. XStat will be especially useful to control bleeding from pelvis or shoulder injuries where tourniquets can’t be placed. For deep gunshot or shrapnel wounds, medics on the battlefield sometimes stuff gauze several inches into the body -- which is painful and not always effective. 
 
The device was developed by Oregon-based RevMedx with the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command.
 
 
Image via U.S. Army
 

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