A neural tourniquet reduces bleeding without a rope or physical compression of the blood vessel. doctors press a handheld device against the skin to stimulate the vagus nerve, which transmits information between the brain and the major organs. The nerve stimulation conveys a signal to the spleen, where the platelet blood cells that form clots receive their instructions. This signal “primes” the platelets, prepping them to form clots if they encounter a wound anywhere in the body.
“This grabs control of the mechanism the brain uses,” Czura says. “The body has this natural physiologic pathway to control bleeding, and this just ramps it up.”
The neural tourniquet could be useful for battlefield medicine, emergency response, surgery, and postpartum care. The tech is being developed by a company called Sanguistat, the Feinstein Institute’s second spin-off.
The tech will get its first tryout as a treatment for postpartum hemorrhage, the leading cause of maternal death around the world: it kills close to 80,000 women each year in Africa and asia and around 6,000 in the U.S. each year. In partnership with the Bill Gates-backed Global Good Fund, the Feinstein and Sanguistat researchers are launching clinical trials in the United States and in the developing world. Postpartum hemorrhage is the leading cause of maternal deaths worldwide.
The Neural Tourniquet is a medical device that reduces bleeding due to child birth, trauma, and hemophilia.
Disclosed is a method of reducing bleed time in a subject by activation of the cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway in said subject. The cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway can be activated by direct or indirect stimulation of the vagus nerve. The cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway can also be activated by administering an effective amount of cholinergic agonist or acetylcholinesterase inhibitor to the subject.