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Surgeons designed cheap headlights to make operations safer in poor conditions


(Reuters Health) – Operations in poor countries can be dangerous, as is often the case when electrical power is exhausted.

For this reason, a group of doctors working with a charity organization called Lifebox came together in low-and middle-income countries to design a cheap headlight to be used in kes destructive, dangerous, and everywhere in power cuts Bu. The group writes in JAMA Surgery.

If they can find a manufacturer to cooperate, the lights will be available as soon as possible. Thomas Weiser was an assistant professor of surgery in the trauma department and a critical care service at Stanford University School. Medicine in California.

Di Our experience was that surgeons should find workarounds when working in countries where lighting is problematic, We Weiser said. "Most of them pull a flashlight or cell phone light or another kind of makeshift, stop measure."

Weiser, it can take 10 minutes for the power to reactivate, even when a hospital has a backup generator. Edi Obviously, this is a big security problem, “he added.

Weiser, most of the time, even when the power is turned on, high-end lighting would not be enough. "In the United States, many surgeons wear surgical headlights when operated. In the body cavity, you may want to see a hole down and see clearly."

He said Lifebox has made progress in reducing anesthesia and infection. And the lighting seemed to be an obvious place to explore further improvements, especially with the emergence of cheaper and brighter LED lights.

Researchers have a significant impact on patient safety in poor countries where more than 125 million operations are performed each year, with a good surgical light. These are places where electricity is unreliable up to 30 percent of the surgical facilities due to power failures.

Weiser and his authors estimate that at least 24 million patients a year are at risk of damage from light loss during surgery.

Need to be clear: 80 percent of surgeons in low- and middle-income countries reported that their current lighting was risky for patient safety, and 18 percent said they had direct knowledge of a patient who was hurt because of inadequate surgical interventions.

Weiser and his colleagues first bought eight LED lights on the market to develop some specifications for a useful and cost effective headlight for surgeons in worse countries. They measured the light intensity from the light source to about 16 inches and tested the maximum and minimum acceptable light intensity in three hospitals in Ethiopia and in the US where there was no other light, ambient light, and overhead surgical light.

With this data and feedback from the surgeons involved in the tests, the group came up with a number of features for ideal surgical light.

He was vice president of surgery at California University in Los Angeles and founder of the Global Center for Surgical Studies. . It's great to focus on this single core that can change the safety of an operation, Roch said Rochelle Dicker. ”The challenge is to realize that you can do a safer surgery by providing just the right lighting and that millions of people can perform life-saving surgeries.“

Dicker, who is not involved in the design project, said there are three basic needs that could make surgery more secure in poorer countries. Siniz Water, so you can wash your hands; gloves and lighting that should be given in this country, but not in these countries. bu "Sometimes it can be really hard to see when working in the body cavity. In many places like Tanzania and Uganda, there are wall structures that do not allow too much natural light to enter."

Dicker, a Weiser and his colleagues designed a headlight in low and middle income countries would be welcomed by surgeons, he said. "I know my colleagues in Uganda have been working with me for 12 years, if they saw their eyes explode, they would be very excited to include them."

SOURCE: JAMA Surgery, online November 14, 2018.

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