Project Lead(s): Claudio Castillón Lévano
Each year, approximately 10 million babies do not breathe immediately at birth and about 6 million require basic neonatal resuscitation. One hundred percent of patients from remote hospitals needing artificial respiration in low-income settings are transferred to hospitals with higher levels of available assistance. Patients often receive unsafe respiratory therapy during their transfer, due to a lack of proper equipment to control the air pressure that is supplied.
The main aim of the project was to develop a prototype for a hand-held, mechanical, neonatal resuscitator called a “Volume Adjustable Manual Resuscitator”. The prototype was developed for manual operation by professionals with little training. It was also designed to allow a physician to simultaneously conduct respiratory therapy as well as auscultation and cardiac resuscitation of the patient.
The Volume Adjustable Manual Resuscitator generates a series of air or oxygen volumes, or a combination of both, at a pressure controlled and selected by the physician, in such a way that in each inspiration of each respiratory cycle, the equipment always cuts and discards the exceeding flow, meaning that all volumes of each respiratory cycle and their respective pressures are similar.
Positive results are achieved irrespective of the irregularity of the health professional’s strength when cyclically pressing the resuscitation bag of the manual resuscitator, or with the patient’s pulmonary compliance. This characteristic allows provision of manual respiratory ventilation at the minimum pressure required by each patient.
The Volume Adjustable Manual Resuscitator can graphically monitor the respiratory parameters of the patient being assisted, thereby reducing the risk of lung injury, which is not possible with other manual ventilators currently on the market.
The equipment is suitable for hospitals in remote areas without trained staff, for transporting patients in ambulances, for the care of newborns in the maternity ward and as auxiliary equipment to the pulmonary ventilation equipment in the intensive care unit.
The prototype of the Volume Adjustable Manual Resuscitator was introduced to several physicians of the National Institute of Child Health in the San Borja district of Peru. All of the physicians who were consulted liked the developed equipment and have committed to conducting preclinical tests.
No preclinical and clinical testing (validation of the prototype) has been done, due to the suspension of clinical trials with children in Peru.
Knowledge of the project was widely disseminated in publications and the team has submitted an application for Transition To Scale (TTS) funding.