University Health Care Doctors Develop Award-winning Anesthesia Removal Device

University Health Care Doctors Develop Award-winning Anesthesia Removal Device

Jun 25, 2008 10:31 AM

Three University Health Care anesthesiologists have invented a device that actively reverses inhaled anesthesia after surgery. For many patients, the QED-100 can significantly decrease – or, in some cases, eliminate – many post operation side effects of inhaled anesthesia such as vomiting, nausea or extreme fatigue.

University of Utah School of Medicine faculty members Dwayne R. Westenskow, Ph.D., professor of anesthesiology, Derek J. Sakata, M.D., assistant professor of anesthesiology, and Joseph A. Orr, Ph.D., M.S., M.E.M., research assistant professor of anesthesiology, say the device they invented also reduces the risk of respiratory complications after surgery, especially in older or heavier individuals or patients with pre-existing conditions such as obstructive sleep apnea, asthma or obstructive airway.

“As anesthesiologists, our primary goal is to keep our patients safe and comfortable,” said Sakata, who started thinking about active anesthetic removal while completing his medical residency. “By utilizing the QED-100, we can cut anesthesia recovery time down to minutes as opposed to hours while significantly reducing the risk of complications.”

The QED-100, which was selected as the top medical device innovation at the 2008 Utah Innovation Awards in March, is believed to be the first device of its kind to actively eliminate inhaled anesthesia.

Instead of waiting for the anesthetic to “wear off,” this small, plastic device works by encouraging hyperventilation and allowing patients to re-breathe their own carbon dioxide. Hyperventilation clears anesthetic from the blood through the lungs, and increased carbon dioxide encourages brain blood flow to remove anesthetic from the brain. Finally, the mechanism absorbs disposed anesthetic to prevent recirculation into the patient’s system. The QED-100 is a one-time-use attachment that works with most standard ventilation machines.  

The QED-100 has been used in more than 5,000 patients at hospitals and clinics around the country. University Health Care, which includes University Hospital, the John A. Moran Eye Center, the Huntsman Cancer Institute, Huntsman Cancer Hospital, and 11 Community Clinics along the Wasatch Front, uses this device in many standard procedures.

The QED-100 has been in the works since 2002, receiving approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2005. Anecare Inc., the company marketing the device, was established in 2004 by Westenskow, Sakata, Orr and Michael Slatter, Anecare’s chief executive officer.

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