Nasogastric Tube Placement Verification System | Engineering Clinic


Project Code: 15024
Project Title: Nasogastric Tube Placement Verification System
Project Type: Industry
Project Intellectual Property: Company Controlled
Project Citizenship Restriction: No

Project Details

Sponsor Company: Xeridiem Medical Devices, a part of Spectrum Plastics Group
Description: Nasogastric tubes are hollow thermoplastic tubes used to deliver nutrition to the stomach of patients who cannot ingest food orally. A common medical malpractice event is the introduction via these tubes of liquid into the respiratory tract instead of the stomach, which can result in fluid aspiration that can lead to patient harm or death. Current standard of practice verifies tube placement in a hospital via a chest X-ray or stomach acid pH test. While these procedures are effective, they are not conducive to repeat verification and require the skills of medical professionals. The goal of the project is to develop a cost-efficient and easy-to-use device that informs the user when the tube has been placed in the stomach, not the airway. The device is small enough for use within existing tubes and can withstand the corrosive gastric environment for up to 30 days. This design uses an open circuit that is closed by ions present in the acidic fluid of the stomach. The closure of the circuit results in a differential voltage signal that provides the user with a “safe to feed” message.