Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Needle-free blood and tissue measurements

02.10.2002


Dr. Babs Soller is developing a sensor system that will measure blood and tissue chemistry with no need for blood draws or incisions.
© National Space Biomedical Research Institute


Whether 240 miles above in the International Space Station or firmly grounded on Earth, medical testing without needles wins everyone’s vote.

Refinements under way to current near infrared (NIR) spectroscopic techniques will expand the range of non-invasive blood and tissue chemistry measurements. These changes also will provide accurate readings unaffected by skin color or body fat.

“Once complete, this device will allow chemical analysis and diagnosis without removing samples from the patient. It will be useful for monitoring surgery patients, assessing severity of traumatic injury, and evaluating injuries in space,” said Dr. Babs Soller, researcher on the National Space Biomedical Research Institute’s smart medical systems team.



Patients may now encounter NIR spectroscopy at the doctor’s office. The pulse oximeter, used for measuring oxygen saturation, employs a small clip placed on the finger or ear to measure the amount of oxygen carried by the blood, along with pulse rate.

“Light in the near infrared region has slightly longer wavelengths than red light. It is important for medicine because those wavelengths, for the most part, actually pass through skin and to some extent bone, allowing you to get chemical information about tissues and blood,” said Soller, a research associate professor of surgery at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

To refine the technology for more varied measurements, Soller and colleagues are gathering data from patients. Study participants include cancer, cardiac surgery and trauma patients.

“We’re measuring hematocrit, tissue pH and tissue oxygenation using our device and standard techniques,” she said. “These data will give us the information needed to derive equations to calibrate the new NIR instrument.”

The blood and tissue measurements will provide key information, such as whether a patient is anemic and whether there are adequate levels of oxygen and blood flow to muscle tissue cells.

To make the device accurate regardless of skin color or body-fat content, Soller’s group is gathering data from 100 subjects representing five ethnic groups – African-American, Asian, Caucasian, Hispanic and Mediterranean.

“NIR light is absorbed by pigment in darker skin, so we are collecting data and developing equations that remove the influence of skin color and fat content on measurements,” Soller said. “Our technique will take this human variability into account. Once we adjust for these variables, we can take measurements on the arm or leg or even sew sensors into clothes.”

The final step will be to develop clinical guidelines for the measurements, so that physicians know the significance of the readings.

“Tissue pH and oxygenation are new medical parameters, so we have to determine specific values that, based on the readings, allow us to identify when a person is in shock or in need of treatment. We also see this device as a means to assess the adequacy of the treatment employed,” Soller said.

Since the technology is being designed to meet the lightweight, low-power and portable requirements of the space program, it will also be useful in ambulances, helicopters and emergency rooms.

“The beauty of the non-invasive technique is that it allows physicians to take measurements continuously, once a second if you want,” she said. “We think these measurements might help prevent serious complications from traumatic injuries by providing early indications of low oxygen availability.”

Soller feels the device will be particularly useful for treating patients with shock caused by excessive bleeding or heart attack, patients with internal bleeding, and pediatric patients, where it can be difficult to take multiple blood samples.

The technology also has potential use in exercise and endurance training.

“Tissue pH can measure how hard a person’s muscles are working. The device could be used to determine when the muscles are exhausted, so you could use it to develop a personal training program,” she said.

The prototype device currently uses two optical fibers, one shining the light into the patient and the other carrying the reflected light back to a device that analyzes the data. However, it still needs to be smaller for space use.

“We’re actively looking for a commercial partner to build a miniature version of the device,” she said.

National Space Biomedical Research Institute
One Baylor Plaza, NA-425, Houston, TX 77030
713-798-7412 (phone), 713-798-7413 (fax)
For more information contact info@www.nsbri.org



The NSBRI, funded by NASA, is a consortium of institutions studying the health risks related to long-duration space flight. The Institute’s 95 research and education projects take place at 75 institutions in 22 states involving 269 investigators.

Kathy Major | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.nsbri.org/NewsPublicOut/20021001.html

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Finding new clues to brain cancer treatment
21.02.2020 | Case Western Reserve University

nachricht UIC researchers find unique organ-specific signature profiles for blood vessel cells
18.02.2020 | University of Illinois at Chicago

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A step towards controlling spin-dependent petahertz electronics by material defects

The operational speed of semiconductors in various electronic and optoelectronic devices is limited to several gigahertz (a billion oscillations per second). This constrains the upper limit of the operational speed of computing. Now researchers from the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter in Hamburg, Germany, and the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay have explained how these processes can be sped up through the use of light waves and defected solid materials.

Light waves perform several hundred trillion oscillations per second. Hence, it is natural to envision employing light oscillations to drive the electronic...

Im Focus: Freiburg researcher investigate the origins of surface texture

Most natural and artificial surfaces are rough: metals and even glasses that appear smooth to the naked eye can look like jagged mountain ranges under the microscope. There is currently no uniform theory about the origin of this roughness despite it being observed on all scales, from the atomic to the tectonic. Scientists suspect that the rough surface is formed by irreversible plastic deformation that occurs in many processes of mechanical machining of components such as milling.

Prof. Dr. Lars Pastewka from the Simulation group at the Department of Microsystems Engineering at the University of Freiburg and his team have simulated such...

Im Focus: Skyrmions like it hot: Spin structures are controllable even at high temperatures

Investigation of the temperature dependence of the skyrmion Hall effect reveals further insights into possible new data storage devices

The joint research project of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) that had previously demonstrated...

Im Focus: Making the internet more energy efficient through systemic optimization

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, recently completed a 5-year research project looking at how to make fibre optic communications systems more energy efficient. Among their proposals are smart, error-correcting data chip circuits, which they refined to be 10 times less energy consumptive. The project has yielded several scientific articles, in publications including Nature Communications.

Streaming films and music, scrolling through social media, and using cloud-based storage services are everyday activities now.

Im Focus: New synthesis methods enhance 3D chemical space for drug discovery

After helping develop a new approach for organic synthesis -- carbon-hydrogen functionalization -- scientists at Emory University are now showing how this approach may apply to drug discovery. Nature Catalysis published their most recent work -- a streamlined process for making a three-dimensional scaffold of keen interest to the pharmaceutical industry.

"Our tools open up whole new chemical space for potential drug targets," says Huw Davies, Emory professor of organic chemistry and senior author of the paper.

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

70th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting: Around 70 Laureates set to meet with young scientists from approx. 100 countries

12.02.2020 | Event News

11th Advanced Battery Power Conference, March 24-25, 2020 in Münster/Germany

16.01.2020 | Event News

Laser Colloquium Hydrogen LKH2: fast and reliable fuel cell manufacturing

15.01.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

NUI Galway highlights reproductive flexibility in hydractinia, a Galway bay jellyfish

24.02.2020 | Life Sciences

KIST researchers develop high-capacity EV battery materials that double driving range

24.02.2020 | Materials Sciences

How earthquakes deform gravity

24.02.2020 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>