BioWeld1: Amazing Israeli Invention Eliminates Surgical Scars and Stitches
An Israeli engineer and resercher named Amnon Lam has developed a revolutionary innovation called BioWeld1 that closes surgical incisions by using cold pasma instead of a needle and thread. A project manager at Tower Semiconductor in northern Israel and former military medic, Lam first became familair with cold plasma from his work at Tower where it use was limited to etching semi-conductors.
Lam combined his combat military experience with cold plasma technology and realized its raw potential in other unexplored areas. He experimented for several years with applications to the cosmetics and dentistry fields. It was, however, in the health care arena, and particualry wound closure, where he saw the most promise.
In his own words: "Tissue reconnection has been done for thousands of years with sutures, and in recent years with staples and glues. It is time for something new in this traditional market...Our cold plasma technology is unique because of its impact on tissues and the wide spectrum of applications it can address..."
Cold plasma is a partially ionized gas that is considered one of the fundamental states of matter (the other three being solid, liquid and gas). Different form all other gasses, plasma is the most common form of matter in the entire universe and its unusual energy stems from the co-existence of both ions and electrons. Up until now, despite studies that have indicated its impressive potential to disinfect, manage bleeding, treat burns and enhance tissue repair, the use of cold plasma has been limited because it can only be used in high temperatures, which can damage and burn adjacent human tissue. BioWeld1 utilizes cold plasma at 40 degrees Celsius.
Plasma can be made to electrically form beams, which can be selectively directed. Its unique thermal profile enables medical applications that would otherwse be impossible using other surgical energy systems. By welding tissues to close surgical wounds, there is no need for staples or sutures, which in turn may prevent fewer infections and better cosmetic results. This is the result of the plasma stimulating the growth of blood vessels which promote a healthy blood supply to the affected area.
BioWeld1 represents the first cold plasma-based surgical tool to reach advanced clinical stages. A 16-patient study led by Professor Abrahamyan at the Republican Institute of Reproductive Health, Perinatology, Obstetrics adn Gynecolgy in Armenia indicated the safety and effectiveness of the cold plasma system. In the study, surgeons closed the skin incisions of 16 women undergoing Cesarian section by welding them together using the cold plasma system and a customized film developed by the scientists at Ion Med. According to Gian Carlo DiRenzo, MD, professor of obstetrics and gynecology: "The results from this study are very encouraging and in my opinion, set the stage for more advanced research on external as well as internal surgical applications."
How does BioWeld1 work?
Developed by the scientists at Ion Med, the technology to power BIoWeld1 comes in the form of a generator which delivers the cold plasma through disposable tips. Suturing has always been cost-effective, but it is also time-consuming and user-dependent; stapling is quicker but more expensive, and it bears the risk of undesirable cosmetic results.
A cold plasma jet produces a very powerful flame that is channeled through the tip of a pen-like device. It closes the wound, which welds the tissue together by applying a thin film called Chitoplast, which is comprised of a naturally occurring sugar. The procedure is not complicated and only takes a few minutes. Eventually, it is hoped that the plasma alone will suffice to close the wounds. BioWeld1 seals the affected area completely, leaving little if any scarring and there is no painful stitching to remove.
Who will benefit the most from BioWeld1?
Ion Med's three clinical trials have so far focused on the closure of Cesarian section incisions and have indicated that BioWeld1 is excellent for sealing the incision and promoting healing and tissue health. Although stitching and stapling have healed countless C-section wounds effectively, a recent study found that up to 44% of women still had a raised scar up to six months afterwards.
According to Lam: "We are focusing on the Cesarian section first becasue we found it will be the easiest path to market due to the importance of achieving a superior cosmetic result while reducing time in the operating room... Other areas...under consideration include: external closure in plastic surgery, treatment of chronic wounds as well as internal applications in abdominal, thoracic and colorectal surgery."
The future of BioWeld 1
Dr. Gian Carlo Di Renzo believes that expanding possibilites in the operating room is an exciting thought for surgeons. He feels strongly that doctors are always seeking the best possible clinical and cosmetic results for their patients and that study findings indicate tht BioWeld1 can be a big help in tissue welding and the treatment of burns and other chronic wounds.
So move over staples, stitches and sutures and make way for revolutionary cold plasma BioWeld1. As Bob Dylan used to say and maybe still does,"the times they are a-changing."
M Dee Dubroff