An innovative device invented by doctors in King’s Lynn will be helping to save the lives of patients in Critical Care units across the country.
Dr Maryanne Mariyaselvam and Dr Peter Young developed the Arterial Glucosave to make a difference to both patients and the clinicians who are treating them.
The device has been engineered to prevent rare arterial line errors when glucose can be confused for saline by alerting the clinician and saving patients from receiving high-levels of insulin, which can lead to a number of serious complications.
This is the fourth device invented by doctors in The Queen Elizabeth Hospital’s Critical Care Unit to improve patient safety and will be manufactured after medical device development company, Medovate, has secured the exclusive rights.
Dr Mariyaselvam said: “We want to save patients from coming to harm but we also want to help doctors and nurses to their jobs in a safe and efficient way. It is very exciting that our idea is going to become a reality.”
Consultant Dr Young said: “This is a relatively rare error to make and following a number of incidents in hospitals from across the country, we wanted to engineer a solution to prevent this from happening.
“What we have done is put into place a simple procedure that gives the clinician a big warning when they are about to make that mistake.”
Arterial lines are routinely used to monitor blood pressure and obtain samples for blood gas analysis.
However, there is a danger in fast-paced units that glucose could be administered instead of the recommended sodium chloride flush.
If a patient receives a high dose of insulin it can lead to hypoglycaemia and fatal neuroglycopenic brain injury.
Glucosave has been designed to change colour to highlight if glucose is present to the nurse or doctor completing the procedure.
The device received £114,000 funding from medical technology funding scheme, Medtech Accelerator.
Medovate, which was launched by Health Enterprise East (HEE), is dedicated to the development and commercilaisation of innovative technologies created within the NHS by providing specialist help and resources to support development through clinical trials, regulatory approval and market launch.
Medovate Investment Manager Robert Donald said: “Mistakes in arterial line administration are reported approximately three times per month to NHS England, so finding an effective safeguard is essential. Thanks to Arterial Glucosave, there is now the very real prospect of eradicating these arterial line errors and saving lives.”
Doctors in the QEH’s Critical Care Unit are well-known for creating innovative devices, including WireSafe, which prevents a guideline being left in a patient after a central line has been inserted, and the Safer Injection System for Regional Anaesthesia (SAFIRA), created by a team led by Dr John Gibson.