Foam Could Increase Survival for Victims of Internal Hemorrhaging
By Dialogo December 17, 2012
The Department of Defense’s medical system aspires to a standard known as the “Golden Hour” that dictates that troops wounded on the battlefield are moved to advanced-level treatment facilities within the first 60 minutes of being wounded, according with a press release on December 10, 2012.
In advance of transport, initial battlefield medical care administered by first responders is often critical to injured service members’ survival. In the case of internal abdominal injuries and resulting internal hemorrhaging, however, there is currently little that can be done to stanch bleeding before the patients reach necessary treatment facilities; internal wounds cannot be compressed the same way external wounds can, and tourniquets or hemostatic dressings are unsuitable because of the need to visualize the injury. The resulting blood loss often leads to death from what would otherwise be potentially survivable wounds.
DARPA launched its Wound Stasis System program in 2010 in the hopes of finding a technological solution that could mitigate damage from internal hemorrhaging. The program sought to identify a biological mechanism that could discriminate between wounded and healthy tissue, and bind to the wounded tissue.
As the program evolved, an even better solution emerged: Wound Stasis performer Arsenal Medical, Inc. developed a foam-based product that can control hemorrhaging in a patient’s intact abdominal cavity for at least one hour, based on swine injury model data.
The foam is designed to be administered on the battlefield by a combat medic, and is easily removable by doctors during surgical intervention at an appropriate facility, as demonstrated in testing.
Wound Stasis performers presented pre-clinical data on the foam treatment at the 2012 Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma in Kauai, Hawaii.
These data demonstrated the ability of the foam to treat severe hemorrhage for up to three hours in a model of lethal liver injury. During testing, minimally invasive application of the product reduced blood loss six-fold and increased the rate of survival at three hours post-injury to 72 percent from the eight percent observed in controls.
For more information, please visit: http://www.darpa.mil