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Abbott has announced that its Advisor HD Grid Mapping Catheter, Sensor Enabled, landed CE Mark approval in Europe. The device is used to track down sources of difficult to diagnose cardiac arrhythmias in order to locate targets for therapeutic ablation procedures. It relies on both electrical impedance and magnetic sensing to map out the heart.  The catheter connects to the company's EnSite Precision Cardiac Mapping System, which displays the maps, and can be utilized to work within any chamber of the heart. The 16 electrode array at the distal end of...
International Biophysics, a firm out of Austin, Texas, won FDA clearance for its FloPump 32 centrifugal disposable heart pump. The device is designed to be powered by the Maquet ROTAFLOW console, which can be used as a stand along unit or a part of a heart-lung machine. The new pump won the CE Mark approval in Europe last year. This is one of the smaller pumps available on the market, with only a 32ml priming volume. It can move up to seven liters of blood per minute at a maximum pressure...
Researchers at the University of Connecticut have developed a biodegradable pressure sensor that can be implanted in the body and help clinicians to monitor a variety of conditions over extended periods of time. What makes this sensor different from existing ones is that it doesn’t need to be removed and will eventually dissolve in the body, eliminating the risk of infection and the longer recovery associated with an invasive surgical procedure to remove a sensor. Clinicians can use implantable pressure sensors to monitor a variety of health conditions, including brain...
Patients receiving comprehensive eye exams have to go from one imaging device to another in order to properly assess their vision. In addition to the hassle, there are costs associated with maintaining and housing multiple pieces of equipment of which only one is usually used at any one time in a typical ophthalmology office. Now researchers at Nicolaus Copernicus University, Poland and Universidad de Murcia, Spain have developed a device that can provide different views of the eye, and with an image quality even better than using multiple instruments. Current...
Printing biological tissues, a necessary precursor to creating replacement organs, is not easy, but constructing extremely soft and fragile tissues that resemble the brain and lungs is even more difficult. Researchers at Imperial College London and Kings College London are now using extremely cold temperatures in combination with 3D printing to create objects out of a composite hydrogel that are about as stiff as grey matter and lung tissue. The team used solid CO2 (dry ice) to quickly cool a composite hydrogel ink below its freezing point while in an...
GI
Traditional colonoscopies that are used to screen patients for presence of colon cancer can be physically unpleasant, much too invasive, and require diets and laxatives that leave patients feeling empty and exhausted. A new option, in the form of a pill that emits X-rays to image the colon, has just been cleared by European regulators via a CE Mark. The C-Scan System from Check-Cap, an Israeli firm, features a swallowable pill that has an X-ray source, a positioning system, computing components, and a battery. The patient first swallows a contrast...
Artificial intelligence is a popular buzz term in medicine these day. While there's a lot of simple things pretending to be smart, there are also some pretty impressive AI applications that can be very useful. Thanks to Fast Company, we learned of Corti, an AI assistant that listens to calls to emergency services (911) and helps dispatchers form the right questions, suggests next steps, and even proposes possible diagnoses. The software not only detects the words that are spoken, but also the tone of the voice and the callers breathing...
A number of congenital conditions result in missing parts of the gastrointestinal tract, such as esophageal atresia, while a few others can necessitate surgical removal of a part of the bowel that then has to be reconnected. Fragile and precious newborns are perhaps the most common patients for procedures requiring bowel regeneration and reconnection. In terms of esophageal atresia, the current standard of care, known as a Foker process, puts the child into an induced coma so that body movement doesn't hamper the disconnected ends of a malformed esophagus from...
At CES 2018 in Las Vegas, NEOFECT, a South Korean firm, was showing off its RAPAEL Smart Pegboard, a new take on a simple rehab device. Pegboards are commonly used in rehabilitation settings to practice hand dexterity, as well as to assess an individual's state and progress. They're particularly useful for those recovering from a stroke, but their design typically doesn't differ much from a children's play toy. The RAPAEL Smart Pegboard is certainly a 21st century pegboard, recognizing when the correct objects are placed into it, lighting up the peg...
Breast biopsies, which can conclusively diagnose the presence of a tumor, suffer from a number of procedural limitations. One big issue is that during the excision of every sample, the physician can't easily confirm whether the taken tissue really does come from the targeted lesion. Hologic's Brevera biopsy system has now been approved in Europe to provide such functionality, allowing the doctor performing a biopsy to quickly pass high quality, useful samples to the pathologist for review. The Bevera features the company's Cor-Lumina imaging technology, which feeds tissue slices taken by a...
Researchers at the Harvard Wyss Institute have developed a biomaterial scaffold that mimics the actions of antigen-presenting cells (APCs) in stimulating T cell growth and survival. The scaffold allowed the researchers to significantly expand T cell numbers in a dish, compared with existing culture methods, and could bring T cell therapies, such as anti-cancer treatments, closer to clinical reality. Anti-cancer T cell therapies involve culturing and sometimes modifying patient-specific T cells in a dish before administering them to a cancer patient, where they can attack and kill cancer cells. A...

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Medgadget's Best of CES 2018

CES 2018 is over. We assessed the many health-related gadgets that were shown off by a myriad of companies, concluded our deliberations, and now is the time to present... January 16th, 2018

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