A new "smart catheter" senses the start of an infection and automatically releases an anti-bacterial substance. It is being tested at the University of Michigan in an effort to stop catheter-related blood and urinary tract infections.
Dipankar Koley, the principal researcher on the project, said the technology can be applied to catheters inserted into blood vessels and the urinary tract.
"About 1.5 million healthcare-associated infections are reported in the United States alone each year, resulting in 99,000 deaths and up to $45 billion in extra health care costs," said Koley. "Urinary tract infections, as one example, are the most common source of institutionally acquired infections in both acute care hospitals and long-term care facilities," said Koley. "Our smart catheter is being developed in response to that need."...