Cleveland researchers are developing plastic-coated synthetic platelets that can be injected by first responders to save lives of wounded soldiers or crash victims in danger of dying from internal bleeding.
It's a product that could potentially have saved the life of Princess Diana who fatally injured in an auto accident in Paris in 1997. Battlefield and sports injuries can also cause severe internal bleeding.
"Emergency treatments for stopping the flow of blood from cuts and other external injuries save thousands of lives each year," say Erin Lavik, associate professor in biomedical engineering at Case Western Reserve University, who heads the research project. "But we have nothing that emergency responders or military medics can use to stop internal bleeding permanently or at least long enough to get a patient to a hospital. There's a tremendous need in the military, where almost 80% of battlefield traumas are blast injuries. In civilian life, there are many accidents, violence-related injuries and other incidents that result in internal bleeding."