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A good deal of orthopedic bone repair surgeries involve injecting powders or pastes, to serve as scaffoding, into fractures. Now a collaboration between scientists at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), University of Oregon, New York University, and Mahidol University in Thailand has led to the development of a Lego-like 3D printed scaffolding system that may turn out to be much easier to use and clinically more effective for treating complex bone fractures. The tiny 3D printed cubes, which are only 1.5 mm on each side, are designed to hold...Read More
A team of researchers from Purdue University and the Indiana University School of Medicine has recently developed and now demonstrated, in realistic simulations, a telemedical augmented reality system that can be used in very difficult and stressful situations. Called System for Telementoring with Augmented Reality (STAR), it allows remote clinicians, such as surgeons, to guide military medics, paramedics, and others in how to perform emergency procedures. The STAR system revolves around an augmented reality headset that's worn by the person on the scene. Video from a forward facing camera on...Read More
People stricken with COVID-19 exhibit a wide range of symptoms. Some are barely affected while others suffer dire consequences. People with asthma are in particular danger, as SARS-CoV-2 is a respiratory virus that can make breathing even more difficult. Now, the FDA has issued an Emergency Use Authorization for the gammaCore Sapphire CV non-invasive vagus nerve stimulator (nVNS) to help adult asthmatics with COVID-19 (or those suspected of being infected) overcome difficulties breathing when drugs are not appropriate or are insufficient. The gammaCore stimulator has been approved as a treatment...Read More
Protaryx Medical, a company based in Baltimore, Maryland, has developed a device to allow for more precise transseptal access to the left atrium during transcatheter procedures. The device provides three-dimensional control and steerability to take the guesswork out of transseptal access to the left atrium, and the company believes that this could improve physician convenience and reduce the chances of complications during such procedures. Transseptal access to the left atrium is required during several transcatheter procedures, including repair or replacement of mitral valves, catheter ablation therapy, and closure of the...Read More
Palliare, a company out of Galway, Ireland, won FDA clearance for its flagship product, the EVA15 insufflator and smoke evacuation system. The EVA15 combines two devices into a compact package that is designed for use in laparoscopic, endoscopic, endolumenal, and robotic procedures. Smoke is a common problem in all kinds of minimally invasive procedures that involve ablation, cauterization, and other kinds of tissue manipulation. Smoke makes it difficult to see the surgical scene, but it can also be harmful to the clinicians that end up breathing in the soot. According...Read More

July 24th, 2020 by Medgadget Editors
Guide dogs can be incredibly helpful, letting blind people maintain a level of independence that would be difficult without their loyalty. However, guide dogs require a huge amount of training and, because they're dogs, are not practical for every blind person. Now, a student at Loughborough University in England has designed a concept handheld device that can do some of the tasks of a guide dog. The electronic tool is called Theia and it features gyroscope-based technology to pull the user in the correct direction. This is similar to how...Read More

July 23rd, 2020 by Medgadget Editors
Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is an imaging technique regularly utilized by ophthalmologists to view multiple layers of the cornea and count the nerves and cells within. It's important for diagnosing a variety of corneal conditions as well as when preparing for cataract surgery. The problem is that, as anyone who has tinkered with macro photography knows, it's very difficult to obtain a sharp image of a large section of a curved surface such as the cornea. Now a team of collaborators in France has developed an exciting new OCT imaging...Read More
Boston Scientific's WATCHMAN, a device that's used to close the left atrial appendage, has done wonders for preventing the formation of clots that lead to stroke in many patients. Now the company has announced that its WATCHMAN FLX, a new and much improved version of the implant, won FDA approval. Already cleared in the European Union, the WATCHMAN FLX is indicated for patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) for whom oral anticoagulants are not sufficient. The new minimally invasive implant can be recaptured, repositioned, and redeployed until proper placement is...Read More
Upper arm prostheses that give their users a sense of touch have been developed in the past (see flashbacks below). These require careful surgical placement of electrodes near the remaining nerves within the stump and precise stimulation of said nerves. Now researchers at the University of Pittsburgh have achieved a remarkable feat of using existing spinal cord stimulators, usually used to treat chronic pain, to produce a sense of touch in the missing limbs of amputees. This can certainly be used to give upper arm prostheses the ability to produce...Read More
Wearable medical devices such as continuous heart rate monitors, insulin pumps, and neural stimulators usually need access to an electric power source in order to function. While there's a great deal of wasted energy that our body emits that can be harvested to power such devices, making it actually happen using biocompatible materials has proven to be challenging. Now, a team of engineers at Purdue University has shown that polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), one of the most common polymers used in biomedicine, can be used to produce efficient triboelectric nanogenerators (TENGs)...Read More
Electrical stimulation and chemical pharmaceuticals are the two ways that doctors and scientists routinely use to manipulate neural cells. Chemicals have their side effects, are slow to take effect, and are usually systemically delivered, while electrical stimulation usually requires invasive wires, is limited in its resolution, and is nearly impossible to administer within certain parts of the brain. Now, researchers at MIT have developed a new way to stimulate neurons that may open up new possibilities for research and clinical practice. With the knowledge that neurons are sensitive to mechanical...Read More

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Scientists 3D-Print Human Heart Pump

Scientists at the University of Minnesota have 3D printed a beating heart muscle ‘pump’ consisting of pluripotent stem cells and an extracellular matrix. The... July 16th, 2020

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