An Anti-clogging IV and alerting system
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While trying to decide what would be a useful biomedical device, I spoke with several physicians and nurses to get their feedback. I believe that many fields would benefit from an anti-clotting IV drip with an alerting system. When an IV bag runs out of fluids, blood begins to backflow up into the tube. This design will create a flap in the drip that will engage when the fluids have been depleted from the bag to keep liquid in the tube. This will create a vacuum to keep blood from flowing into the IV tube and clotting, which would avoid replacement of a new IV to be in the patient. Along with this device, I would also like to design a simple alerting system that allows the nurses to know when the flap is engaged so that they can replace the bag immediately. While the IV can be hooked up to an alerting pump, these pumps can be very expensive due to their many other functions that most patients don’t even need. The flap would work by a pressure change. An intrauterine pressure catheter is used to detect contractions during labor by recording pressure
changes in a column of fluid. I believe that the IV sensor could be modeled using the same ideas. The sensor would detect when the flap is closed and sound the alarm for the nurses. The sensor could also be used to detect a pressure change if the blood vessel bursts as well. This could alert the nurses to stop the IV before there is excessive fluid blood up under the skin.