CTI Swiss Medtech Award 2014: Using ultra sound instead of catheters

03.09.2014 08:45

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The company Veinpress GmbH won the CTI Swiss Medtech Award of CHF 10’000 at the CTI Medtech Event. The company was awarded the prize for the joint development with the ETH Zurich of a novel method for measuring central venous pressure, without having to insert a catheter. The prize for the best Poster worth CHF 5’000 went to Qvanteq.

Gábor Székely, Head of CTI Medtech, presented Orçun Göksel (ETHZ) and Markus Widmer (Veinpress GmbH) with the CTI Swiss Medtech award, which includes a check for more than CHF 10’000 and a trophy representing a symbolic arrow made out of quartzite stone from Vals. Their project was selected from among three nominated projects by the audience of around 400 experts from the fields of Medtech research and industry.

Measuring venous pressure quickly and without causing pain
Central venous pressure (CVP) is an important medical parameter. It is measured every hour for specific medical conditions in intensive care units. CPV allows doctors to draw conclusions regarding the volume of blood in the vascular system. This is relevant in the case of haemorrhage, for example. CPV measurements currently require the insertion of a catheter, which is laborious, painful for the patient and can lead to serious complications.
A CTI Project facilitated the development of a software application for ultrasound measurement, which allows the measurement of CVP in real time independently of the patient. Peripheral venous pressure is measured using an elastic membrane, olive oil as a sound-conducting agent, an ultrasound probe and a measuring device. PVP correlates exactly with CVP. The principle works well. Compared with catheter measurements, the accuracy is 95 per cent. The product should allow for significant savings in healthcare. In addition to being much cheaper than a disposable catheter, the reusable Veinpress system does not cause complications.

The two other nominees for the CTI Swiss Medtech Award were the young company Molitis Medica SA with the development of glass capsules for gastrointestinal analysis in paediatrics and the start-up company rotavis AG with the development of a novel office chair that prevents back pain.

Qvanteq, a start-up from Zurich developing innovative stents won the CTI Swiss Medtech Best Poster Award. Qvanteq develops Qstent, a small metal mesh tube, being implanted into coronary arteries to prevent heart attacks, combining the current advantages of drug-eluting stents (reduced re-narrowing risk) with those of bare metal stents (fast ingrowth; hence reduced thrombosis risk).

CTI Medtech Initiative
The CTI Medtech Initiative was launched in 1997 and has since funded over 500 projects. CTI Medtech pursues two main objectives: to improve the innovativeness and competitiveness of Swiss medical technology and to stimulate the transfer of know-how between researchers, medical technology companies, start-up companies and SMEs. In 2013, CTI approved 29 projects and awarded federal grants amounting to CHF 9.6 million.

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