Technology Cuts Risk Of Surgical Sponges

Surgical instrument

You know what I hate? I hate it when I go in for an operation and weeks or months later I’m in pain and agony or die, only come to find out it’s because the Doc left a foreign object in me.

Not foreign like Pakistan or Chile, I mean foreign like ‘I wasn’t born with this thing in my gut so why the hell is it in me now?’.

You’ve probably seen the numerous news and court judgements against the doctors and nurses that left a surgical  sponge in a patient, sewed them up and sent them home.

But then there’s the biggies like the surgical instruments left in patients like clamps or even a 13″ retractor!

Apparently it isn’t so rare with 1500 people in the USA alone finding gear in their guts every year.

To help resolve this dilemma, we now have hospitals using sponges with RFID tags in them. Nurses can swipe a wand over the sponges before and after to obtain a count and ensure one or more didn’t end up missing.

You can see the gadget at RF Surgical Systems product page here.

Fine, now that they have resolved the deal with the sponges, can someone do something about this clamp and retractor business?

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I'm an eternal optimist, geek of many areas, entrepreneur, coder, love RVs, cats and nuclear submarines.

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