Monday, July 22, 2013

Inspiring Technology: Neurostimulation, Glucose Monitoring, Healing Gel

Some of the largest advancements in technology today is happening in the medical field. As the average age of the United States continues to increase there is an increased need to provide new, innovative ways to treat many different diseases and illnesses. Thankfully, new technologies are being researched that can provide more efficient therapy without using as many chemicals. These technologies are being used largely to make living with chronic diseases such as diabetes much easier.

Neurostimulation Therapy


This neurostimulator will be inserted under the skin in one cheek to help reduce headaches.

Many people in the world suffer from chronic headaches. Some of the most aggravating chronic headaches  occur on the sphenopalatine ganglion (SPG), which is a nerve bundle in the face. In the past these headaches have only been treated with pain-relievers such as aspirin or other medications. However, Automatic Technologies Inc. has developed a new way to provide patients with a way to administer their own therapy whenever they have a headache. The new method, called SPG Neurostimulation, uses 2 components, a small neurostimulator implanted under the cheek by the nerve bundle, and a remote controller. The remote controller sends an electrical impulse to the neurostimulator which then uses the low-level electrical impulse to reduce and eventually stop the pain. In clinical trials patients who use the simulator simply hold the remote control up to their cheek whenever they have a headache. Patients have reported that while using the neurostimulator that their headaches subside in as quickly as 15 minutes and that after prolonged use headaches occurred half as often. This technology is still in development, but should be ready for the public soon.

For more information on the SPG Neurostimulation System click here

Continuous Glucose Monitoring


Patch that constantly monitors glucose with no needles.
Glucose Monitoring System


There are many inhibiting chronic diseases present in the United States. One of the more common is diabetes. While modern medicine makes it possible for people to live with diabetes, it is nowhere near convenient. However, Echo Therapeutics has developed a system to make it easier for diabetics to monitor their blood-glucose levels. This system is called the Symphony CGM System, which uses a small needle-free patch to constantly monitor glucose levels and alert the patient any time their glucose levels are unusually high or low. This system will allow diabetes patients to go about their day to day activities without having to constantly wonder what their glucose levels are and helps prevent complications that can occur later in life because of unusual glucose levels. The system works by first using the Prelude SkinPrep device to increase the permeability of the skin of the site of the patch. Then the patch is applied and after warming up provides minute-by-minute data to a mobile device.

For More information on the Echo CGM System click here

Healing Gel

Tube of Veti-Gel, which can vastly speed up the healing process of open wounds.
Veti-Gel Compound

It may seem like something out of science fiction, but Joe Landolina, a junior at New York University has produced a gel based off of plant polymers that meshes with the skin around open wounds and speeds up the clotting process. Veti-Gel, as he calls it, has been tested on both rats and pigs, with great success. The process still isn't perfect, but scientists now believe that this gel could eventually be used in emergency response to stop blood flow and reduce the risk of infection. The gel works by mimicking the extracellular matrix that holds cells in place and covering the wound. This allows coagulation to occur over a much larger surface, speeding up the process. After the bleeding has stopped, which only takes a few seconds with most wounds, the gel can be peeled off or sprayed with a protective layer to act as a bandage. The gel is currently only being released into the veterinary market, but after more testing should become available for use in people as well.

For more information on Veti-Gel and its current applications click here

<- For Last week's Inspiring Technology article click here

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