Syringe has gentle touch

Patients may feel less of a pinch when getting their next injection with the use of a new syringe developed by UK and Swiss medical device specialists.

The InJentle syringe system, which was developed in part by Cambridge Consultants, is being commercialised through Swiss manufacturer Schott.

The new pre-filled syringe houses its needle inside a plastic shield instead of a rubber bung.

Phil Lever, head of drug delivery at Cambridge Consultants, said normal pre-filled syringes require the needle to pierce through a rubber bung before it can be injected into a patient’s skin.

The InJentle syringe pricks the skin with more ease and less pain

The rubber can cause the needle to blunt and become more painful to the patient, he said. The sharper needles produced by the InJentle syringe prick the skin with more ease and less pain.

Cambridge Consultants also notes InJentle can be combined with particularly thin needles – potentially up to 32 gauge – that are also siliconised, contributing to improved patient comfort.

Lever said another innovative design feature of the InJentle is its ‘pinch seal’ closure, which ensures that the drug is not in contact with the metal needle or the adhesive of the syringe during storage. This, he added, prevents sensitive drugs from interacting with these potential contaminants.

Another potential contaminant, tungsten, has been removed from the InJentle pre-filled glass syringe design. Schott, which specialises in manufacturing a variety of glass, claims to have removed all tungsten from the glass-forming process of the syringe barrel – making it completely tungsten free.

Lever said the InJentle design concept also takes into account increasing concerns from pharmaceutical companies about drug tampering and counterfeiting. In the future it is possible, he added, to include further anti-counterfeiting features into the syringe system such as RFID tags.

‘Counterfeiting is a big concern in the pharmaceutical industry and it’s growing,’ Lever said. ‘Pharmaceutical companies with their product brands and their ethics are obviously very careful that their drugs aren’t copied.’

Schott is currently marketing the InJentle pre-filled syringe to pharmaceutical licensing partners for a variety of drug-delivery applications.