PEABODY — Analogic Corp. has come up with a handheld ultrasound system it says can fit in a lab coat pocket and act as a window through the skin for a caregiver trying to place an IV in a vein.
The company says its Sonic Window will make it easier for clinicians to insert a line on the first try, allowing for faster care, fewer complications and less cost.
It may also mean fewer needle sticks for patients — a particular bonus when the patients are children.
The hope is the device will bring ultrasound imaging out of the radiology department and into the emergency room, doctor’s office, phlebotomy lab, outpatient clinic or even ambulance. The company can envision its use in a pediatrics office, where it may bring peace of mind or a distraction to a child facing the dreaded needle stick.
“It’s something everyone can relate to and everyone has a strong feeling about, especially if you are a parent,” said Farley Peechatka, senior vice president and general manager of Analogic’s ultrasound business.
The device, about the size of a television remote control, can provide a direct look at structures just under the skin. It’s sleek and self-contained and has only a few buttons and a simple user interface. An LCD screen on the top of the device provides the image. It doesn’t need a separate cart, and it can be operated using one hand.
“You don’t have to use a trained ultrasound technician,” said Mark Namaroff, director of investor relations. A nurse could use it to see blood vessels in the arm to place an IV catheter.
Sonic Window has been approved for use guiding the placement of peripheral IVs, but there may be other applications for it in the future, company officials say. “We certainly see the potential to bring ultrasound to applications closer to the patient,” Peechatka said.