Penn Medicine researchers have developed a wearable sleeve that provides fast pulsating compression and aims to mimic the compression our calf muscles experience while walking. The technology, marketed by Osciflex, a derivative of Penn Medicine, is designed to prevent deep vein thrombosis in patients who are bedridden for long periods of bed rest.
Deep vein thrombosis tends to affect those who are not very mobile, so getting out of bed to stretch your legs is a challenge, making it difficult to prevent the disease. Mechanical cuffs are currently used that are periodically inflated around the leg, with mixed success. Another option is anticoagulant medications, but these treatments carry additional risks of uncontrolled bleeding, meaning they are not suitable for all patients.
The researchers behind this new device studied the gene expression involved in deep vein thrombosis and found that the genetic basis for healthy blood flow can be deregulated for long periods of inactivity. “We started examining venous valves and their gene expression compared to lymphatic valves,” said Mark Kahn, a researcher involved in the project. many pathologies “.
According to the researchers, the mechanical cuffs currently in use are not effective enough to prevent clot formation in the venous valves. “They all worked in a way that moved the blood forward, but it had no effect on the valves that we believe were critical,” said John Welsh, another researcher involved in the project.
Its solution is the Oscipulse and aims to mimic the rapid compression that occurs during walking. Researchers say it can help maintain healthy blood flow more effectively than mechanical fists. “It’s more like a quick touch, a fluid wave similar to the behavior of things during something like walking,” Kahn said.
To date, researchers have tested their device with healthy volunteers and used ultrasound images to monitor compression during normal calf contraction and while using the device, to make sure it mimicked healthy behavior. “We really benefited from developing the ultrasound protocol and creating a biomarker to look for,” Welsh said. “We were able to test more compression, less and then use ultrasound to evaluate design changes.”
“Our ultimate goal is to replace compression devices that don’t work particularly well, but are used in most patients across the country,” Kahn said. “This is relatively simple, prepared for the manufacture and guided by the investigation. We think it can help a lot of people. “
Link: Osciflex homepage …
Via: Penn Medicine