The invention of anesthetics is one of the most remarkable feats of mankind. This breakthrough invention completely changed the course of the health care industry by spurring numerous advancements in surgery and treatments. Essentially, part of the reason the average lifespan of human beings has steadily increased over the years can be attributed to the field of anesthesia.
In recent decades, however, there has been little to no progress in terms of improving the efficiency and delivery of anesthetics, especially outside of the traditional operating room (OR) environment. Among those areas of growing concern is the length of time that anesthetic agents stay in a patient’s body. After a number of doses, intravenously delivered anesthetic agents and sedatives, including those agents used on ventilated patients in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), become harder to clear from the body. Additionally, patients quickly build up tolerance to these powerful drugs necessitating higher dosage levels that are often beyond the levels approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA).
Overmedication has become an alarming issue, especially as it pertains to patients with compromised livers and kidneys. These types of patients do not metabolize medicine as efficiently as healthy individuals.It is estimated that around 40% of the ventilated patients have multiple organ failures resulting in patients staying on ventilators for a longer period of time, resulting in longer stays in the ICU and higher associated expenses. After 3-4 days on a ventilator, up to 75% of patients may develop delirium — the second leading cause for dementia.
First Wave Technologies, Inc., a New York-based medical device company, is striving to address these issues by developing an anesthesia system, Clarity-IA®, that promises to completely redefine the traditional way of utilizing anesthetics for the acute care and long-term care markets.
The Next-Gen Smart Anesthesia System
Clarity-IA® is a next-gen inhalational anesthesia system that expands the use of inhaled anesthetics worldwide.The goal of Clarity-IA® is to significantly enhance the precision of sedation for a patient, thereby preventing increased dosage levels and delirium, an ailment which can last for years after the patient is discharged from the hospital. This intelligent anesthesia system breaks the well-established link between current sedation practices and delirium and allows for the safe use of inhaled anesthetics in the ICU. Consequently, it improves patient outcomes and lowers healthcare costs for patients. By some estimates, delirium caused by intravenous-based sedation used today results in $140 billion of healthcare related costs.