Scanner Detects Bedsores Before They're Visible
Elderly and bed-ridden or wheel-chair bound patients can develop painful and life-threatening bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers.
Now, a new device that offers early detection of inflammations that can lead to bedsores before they are visible, is in the final stages of an FDA clinical trial and may be approved by the end of 2016 for use in the USA.
UCLA-based Bruin Biometrics CEO Martin Burns says a former NASA jet-propulsion Mars Rover laboratory sensor expert worked with others to develop the new hand-held SEM Scanner. SEM Scanner use in some UK hospitals has resulted in reductions of the rate of pressure ulcer development from between 5-30%, to zero.
- Bedsores develop below the skin surface, from the inside out.
- Inflammation starts, and although it’s not visible at first, it can be measured and detected with the SEM Scanner days before a bedsore develops on the skin’s surface
- The areas most prone to developing pressure ulcers are the heels and other bony areas of the body covered by skin such as hips/buttocks, tailbone and ankles.
- Complications from pressure ulcers ultimately led to paralyzed former actor Christopher Reeves’ death.
According to the Mayo Clinic, other common conditions that occur with aging such as fragile, thinner skin, poor nutrition and hydration, poor blood flow, or incontinence, are added risk factors for developing bedsores or pressure ulcers. Baby boomers moving into their senior citizen years may encounter an illness or injury that affects their mobility and requires extended bed rest or wheelchair use. Our increasing aging population will put financial pressure on the healthcare system to provide nurses with better methods to prevent pressure ulcers or bedsores from developing.