Gallbladder Stent Insertion Regulator

University of Virginia, 2008 - $15,200

Approximately 40,000 patients per year that suffer from pancreatico-biliary disease receive Self-Expanding Metal Stents (SEMS) to alleviate pain. SEMS placement is normally a 30-60 minute outpatient procedure that involves passing an endoscope through the patient's mouth and navigating through the stomach to the entrance of the biliary duct. The insertion procedure can be complicated, however, and the stent can be easily misplaced, leading to infection, morbidity, and hospital admission.

This E-Team is developing a device to help make SEMS procedures easier. The device is an after-market addition to the existing SEMS catheter that acts like a shock absorber, slowing any sudden increases in insertional speed and giving the technician enough time to retract the inner catheter before SEMS misplacement occurs.