The world is a dangerous place, but this ground-breaking piece of equipment could help save the lives of future gunshot victims.
The XSTAT 30 is a syringe-like device that injects tiny blood-absorbing sponges directly into a gunshot wound, helping to seal it in less than a minute. Traditionally, bullet wounds are treated with gauze before pressure is applied, until the victim can be transferred to a treatment centre.
Designed and created by Oregon-based RevMedx, the XSTAT 30 has now been approved for civilian use by the FDA after tried and tested results in theatres of war.
The FDA spoke about the benefits of the XSTAT 30 in a press release:
According to the United States Army Institute of Surgical Research, 30 to 40 percent of civilian deaths by traumatic injury are the result of haemorrhaging. Of those deaths, 33 to 56 percent occur before the patient reaches a hospital.Advertisement
XSTAT 30 is cleared for use in patients at high risk for immediate, life-threatening, and severe haemorrhagic shock and non-compressible junctional wounds, when definitive care at an emergency care facility cannot be achieved within minutes.
With those stats in mind, it’s critical that wounds are sealed as quickly as possible to boost chances of survival. While the XSTAT 30 was approved for use on the battlefield way back in April 2014, the decision to open it up for civilian use could be huge.
The sponges are made of wood pulp and coated in chitosan – an antimicrobial substance that clots the blood and comes from shrimp shells. Each applicator can absorb up to a pint of blood, using as many or as few sponges as are necessary, and will last for four hours until the patient can reach treatment.
The XSTAT 30 isn’t perfect though, and isn’t intended for use in certain areas of the chest, abdomen, pelvis or tissue above the collarbone. The sponges also have to be removed individually, and it’s possible that some could be left behind once a wound has been treated and closed – this is a problem as the sponges aren’t biodegradable. Fortunately though, each sponge is marked with an X that will show up on x-rays just in case.