Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New device to cut dialysis risk

Date:
June 28, 2011
Source:
Johns Hopkins University
Summary:
A graduate student team has invented a device to reduce the risk of infection, clotting and narrowing of the blood vessels in patients who need blood-cleansing dialysis because of kidney failure.

This illustration shows the Hermova Port attached to the femoral vein beneath the skin, where the student inventors say the risk of infection is reduced.
Credit: Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University graduate students have invented a device to reduce the risk of infection, clotting and narrowing of the blood vessels in patients who need blood-cleansing dialysis because of kidney failure.

The device, designed to be implanted under the skin in a patient's leg, would give a technician easy access to the patient's bloodstream and could be easily opened and closed at the beginning and end of a dialysis procedure.

The prototype has not yet been used in human patients, but testing in animals has begun.

The students learned about the need for such a device last year while accompanying physicians on hospital rounds as part of their academic program. They watched as one doctor performed a procedure to open a narrowed blood vessel at a kidney patient's dialysis access site. They learned that this narrowing was a common complication facing kidney patients.

The students discovered that kidney failure each year requires 1.5 million people globally and 350,000 in the United States alone to undergo regular hemodialysis to prevent a fatal buildup of toxins in the bloodstream. The students also learned that the three most common ways to connect the machine to a patient's bloodstream work only for a limited time because of problems with infection, blood clots and narrowing of the blood vessels. Current dialysis access options are "grossly inadequate," contributing to increased healthcare expenses and, in some cases, patient deaths, the students say.

To address these problems, the students developed an access port that can be implanted in the leg beneath the skin, reducing the risk of infection. The Hemova Port's two valves can be opened by a dialysis technician with a syringe from outside the skin. The technician can similarly close the valves when the procedure is over, an approach that helps avoid infection and clotting. The device also includes a simple cleaning system, serving as yet another way to deter infections.

Currently, most dialysis access sites are in the arm or the heart. The Hemova device instead is sutured to the leg's femoral vein, avoiding the unnaturally high blood flows that cause vessel narrowing when dialysis machines are connected to veins and arteries in the arm. The student inventors say the Hemova Port's leg connection should allow the site to remain in use for a significantly longer period of time.

The port won a $10,000 first prize for Johns Hopkins graduate students in the 2011 ASME Innovation Showcase. The competition, involving 10 collegiate teams, was conducted in Texas earlier this month at the annual meeting of ASME, founded in 1880 as the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Judges based their awards on technical ingenuity, quality of business plans, potential for success in the marketplace and other factors.

The five biomedical engineering students on the team were enrolled in a one-year master's degree program in the university's Center for Bioengineering Innovation and Design. Sherri Hall, Peter Li, Shishira Nagesh, Mary O'Grady and Thora Thorgilsdottir all recently graduated, but Li has remained in Baltimore to form a company that will continue to test and develop the project.

With help from the Johns Hopkins Technology Transfer staff, the team has filed for three provisional patents covering their technology. The patents list the five students and three medical faculty advisers as the inventors.

"Winning first-place in the ASME competition is a great honor," Li said. "The award and the recognition will go a long way toward helping to continue further research, and we hope it will bring us closer to the day when our device is available to help dialysis patients."

The Hemova team has applied for a $50,000 grant to conduct more animal testing in the coming months. Clinical trials involving human patients could begin as soon as 2013, the students said.

The students' clinical advisers were Johns Hopkins School of Medicine faculty members Thomas Reifsnyder, an assistant professor of surgery; and Kelvin Hong and Clifford R. Weiss, assistant professors of radiology.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins University. "New device to cut dialysis risk." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110628112802.htm>.
Johns Hopkins University. (2011, June 28). New device to cut dialysis risk. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110628112802.htm
Johns Hopkins University. "New device to cut dialysis risk." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110628112802.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 18, 2014) Researchers at The National University of Singapore have invented a new microneedle patch that could offer a faster and less painful delivery of drugs such as insulin and painkillers. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) The first nurse to be diagnosed with Ebola at a Dallas hospital walked down the stairs of an executive jet into an ambulance at an airport in Frederick, Maryland, on Thursday. Pham will be treated at the National Institutes of Health. (Oct. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) A Caribbean cruise ship carrying a Dallas health care worker who is being monitored for signs of the Ebola virus is heading back to Texas, US, after being refused permission to dock in Cozumel, Mexico. (Oct. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) All four suspected Ebola cases admitted to hospitals in Spain on Thursday have tested negative for the deadly virus in a first round of tests, the government said Friday. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins