Design student develops device that quickly stops bleeding from puncture wounds | News from science and technology
A university student has developed a device that can quickly stop catastrophic blood loss from stab wounds.
The device uses pressure to prevent bleeding and targets areas that are usually difficult to treat, such as the armpit, groin, and abdomen.
It consists of a silicone case and a handheld device.
The cover – a tamponade – is placed in the wound and then connected to the hand-held device – a so-called actuator.
After the wound has been found by the actuator, it inflates to a defined pressure to prevent internal bleeding.
It was designed by Joseph Bentley, a product design and technology student at Loughborough University.
He said the prototype called REACT was faster and more effective than the traditional wound packing method.
Wound packs are used by paramedics, but the police are often first on the scene when a knife is stabbed, so Mr Bentley said he wanted to develop a product that they could easily use.
A stabbed victim can bleed to death in as little as five minutes, so the priority is to stop the blood loss as soon as possible.
Mr. Bentley said, “Police and paramedics usually use a bleeding control kit that contains gauze, which they force into the wound with great force.
“In certain circumstances, the gauze can be pushed into the wound using a procedure known as wound packing.
“This gauze fills the space inside the wound, exerts internal pressure on the site, and closes all sorts of severed arteries.
“This is not viable with wounds in a cavity like the abdomen because you would run out of gauze if you tried to fill the empty space.”
Mr. Bentley said REACT is “faster and easier” than a wound pack, which can take up to a minute and has to be removed and reapplied if it is not tight enough the first time.
He also said that unlike gauze, the device can be safely and easily removed in surgery.
“When surgeons try to remove gauze from a wound, it often tears out the clot, causing the bleeding to start again.
“REACT works like the balloon on the inside of paper mache and can be safely removed leaving the clot intact.”
Mr. Bentley has applied for a UK patent for REACT and intends to develop the prototype to enclose wounds in other parts of the body.
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