Innovations and advancements in medical devices and their components have changed the lives of people across the world, both for patients as well as their families and friends.

This is especially true for families such as the Sekino family in Japan, who in 2019 took home their baby boy, one of the smallest babies to leave a hospital safely. Weighing only 258 grams at birth after 24 weeks and five days of gestation, baby Ryusuke Sekino spent six months in the neonatal intensive care unit at Nagano Children’s Hospital before his parents could take him home.

Ryusuke was looked after by a dedicated team at Nagano Children’s Hospital, and over the course of the time he spent there, he was put on several different mechanical ventilation modes, such as HFOV, as well as his longest treatment spending two and half months assisted by NAVA ventilation by Swedish life science company Getinge.

NAVA ventilation closely monitors the output of the patient’s respiratory centre by capturing the electrical signal that activates the diaphragm, so their own natural respiratory drive controls the ventilator. Sandvik’s Exera® medical wire is used for the Edi catheter that detects diaphragm activity.

Ryusuke had a condition known as bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), which can affect babies born prematurely if their lungs have not fully developed. The baby boy was still in danger after extubation, so NAVA ventilation was used to support his own respiration, eventually enabling him to gain weight and for his lungs to develop. Without this ventilation mode, the lung damage could have been much worse.

Sandvik works closely with medical device innovators such as Getinge to design and manufacture Exera® fine medical wire and wire-based components that are configured for the specific application. Combining its expertise in metallurgy, process development and wire coatings, Sandvik is dedicated to ensuring that OEMs can meet all of their expectations and continue to develop devices that can save and enrich lives. For more info visit their website.