Robotic Implant to Apply Tissue Traction Forces in the Treatment of Esophageal Atresia
Inventors: Asghar Ataollahi, Pierre Dupont, Dana Damian, Veaceslav (Slava) Arabagi
Invention Types: Medical Device
Research Areas: Gastrointestinal/Nutrition
Keywords: SurgeryFor More Information Contact: Herrera Gutierrez, Aida
Esophageal atresia is a rare birth defect (1/4000 births) where a child is born with an incomplete esophagus. One treatment for long gap esophageal atresia (>3cm difference) is the Foker technique, which utilizes sutures to gradually apply traction forces to both ends of the esophagus to encourage lengthening. The sutures that are used in the procedure are looped around a patient’s ribs and tied off outside their back. While successful, the hospitalization time (>3.5 months) and cost (>$500,000) of this technique are high.
Researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital have developed a robotic implant that is capable of applying traction forces simultaneously to both ends of the esophagus in patients with LGEA. An ex vivo study demonstrated that the implant is able to generate and control the necessary amount of force needed for the procedure. Current development is focused on prototype size reduction to serve younger patients and in vivo optimization.
• An implanted device and technique to lengthen the esophagus for treating esophageal atresia
• Potential to reduce hospitalization time and cost by a factor of 3.
• Technology eliminates the need for patient paralysis and sedation during treatment.
• Technology allows for more precise control and monitoring of applied force.
• Technology is able to reduce the frequency of x-ray imaging (radiation exposure) for tracking progress.
License Opportunity or Sponsored Research or Collaboration
Key Publications: D. Damian, S. Arabagi, A. Fabozzo, P. Ngo, R. Jennings, M. Manfredi, P.E. Dupont, 2014. Robotic Implant to Apply Tissue Traction Forces in the Treatment of Esophageal Atresia. IEEE Int. Conf. Robotics and Automation: 786-792
IPStatus: Pat. Pend.