Siemens Healthcare has signed a contract with the US Defense Advance Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to develop a life-saving ultrasound device called the deep bleeder acoustic coagulation cuff (DBAC) that limits blood loss from the limbs of injured soldiers.
Partners at the University of Washington’s Center for Industrial and Medical Ultrasound (CIMU), the Texas A&M University’s Institute for Preclinical Studies (TIPS) and Siemens Corporate Research (SCR) will work together with Siemens Healthcare to achieve DARPA’s goal of producing a prototype of the device in 18 months.
The DBAC is designed to limit blood loss from penetrating wounds to limbs, significantly reducing the risk of limb loss and death resulting from irreversible haemorrhagic shock.
Once applied to the limb, the cuff will be able to automatically detect the location and severity of the bleeding within it using ultrasound technology.
This will then trigger the cuff to emit and focus high-power energy towards the bleeding sites, speeding coagulation and halting bleeding.
The device is intended to be used by minimally-trained operators, curtailing bleeding in a minimal amount of time with automatic treatment and power shut-off.
The researchers will work in collaboration with the Combat Casualty Care Group at the US Army Medical Research and Material Command, surgeons from the Madigan Army Medical Center, and the US Army Institute for Surgical Research to develop the system.