Two Critical Care consultants from The Queen Elizabeth Hospital have won an award in a regional innovation competition for a simple piece of equipment that could, potentially, save thousands of lives around the world.
Dr Peter Young and Dr Parvez Moondi took second prize in the medical technology category of the Health Enterprise East 2012 Innovation competition for their invention, chest drain forceps.
Placing a chest drain with the popular Seldinger technique involves placing a wire into the thoracic cavity. Unfortunately it also involves the use of needles and sharp dilators that can cause significant harm.
This alternative innovation centres on a method of wire placement that uses blunt forceps with an integral channel for the wire which stops damage to underlying organs during drain placement.
The technique is safe and will help prevent complications and potential fatalities from poorly performed chest drains. By keeping the use of the wire for chest drain insertion, the ease of use from the Seldinger system will be retained but the new system will avoid complications.
Awards were presented to winners by the TV presenter and broadcaster Maggie Philbin at a special NHS Innovation Awards Ceremony near Cambridge on 10 October.
Richard Humphries, for The Queen Elizabeth Hospital King's Lynn NHS Trust