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New Device Helps Limit Hospital Needle Pricks

Xact Medical
Thanks to ultrasound and a robotic arm medical personnel will be able to get needle placement on the first try.

Scientists at Cincinnati Children's Hospital and Ben Gurion University have developed a prototype device designed to quickly and accurately locate a vein or artery in children and adults in need of a medical procedure. It uses ultrasound and a robotic arm.

FIND, or Fast Intelligent Needle Delivery, is the invention of the newly formed company, Xact Medical and an ongoing partnership with Ben Gurion.

Credit Xact Medical
(from left) CEO Andrew Cothrel and Daniel von Allmen, MD, surgeon-in-chief at Cincinnati Children's are in the process of launching the pictured medical device that will accurately place a needle in an artery or vein on the first try.

Co-inventor Daniel von Allen, MD, surgeon-in-chief at Children's, knows finding the right vein on the first try is especially important in children. "The fact that up to a third of central placement attempts in kids fail on the first try is unacceptable to us."

He drew the concept on a napkin while in Israel and engineers from Ben Gurion took it from there.

Xact Medical CEO Andrew Cothrel got a look at the technology early on. "It was almost like playing a video game. You put the cross hairs where you want it, hit the green button and the needle goes where it’s supposed to go.”

The company will initially focus on "central line placements" in kids and adults. However it plans to expand into other areas like biopsies.

Cincinnati Children's and CincyTech are initial investors in Xact Medical. The FIND system is awaiting FDA approval.

Ann Thompson has decades of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market and brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting.