Public Release: 

Carnegie Mellon researchers seek to control blood loss

New biomedical engineering tools

Carnegie Mellon University

PITTSBURGH-- Carnegie Mellon University's Matt Oberdier is developing a new hydrosurgery system to help physicians better manage excessive bleeding during surgery.

Oberdier, a Ph.D. candidate in biomedical engineering at Carnegie Mellon, said his system will be designed to help surgeons readily clear excess blood and control bleeding during critical stages involving brain operations.

"We are creating a device that will house a clear, hermetically sealed dome through which instruments may be passed, and a special pump to apply fluid pressure and monitor the flow to the surgical area,'' said Oberdier.

Surgeons need a clear view during brain operations because they have to navigate deep inside the skull and control very small blood vessels.

"About half of all surgeons' time is spent trying to control some level of bleeding during most operations,'' said James Burgess, a neurosurgeon at Allegheny General Hospital and an adjunct lecturer in Carnegie Mellon's Biomedical Engineering Department. "This new tool will save time and has the potential to benefit more than 35 million patients worldwide,'' said Burgess, Oberdier's co-advisor.

James Antaki, a professor of biomedical engineering at Carnegie Mellon, and Oberdier's co-advisor, said the future of biomedical engineering rests with the development of cutting-edge tools for physicians and hospitals. Antaki is part of an interdisciplinary team that developed a blood pump that provides up to six months of extended circulatory support for children and infants recovering from heart surgery or awaiting a heart transplant.

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Oberdier earned a bachelor of science degree in chemical engineering in 2003 and a master's degree in biomedical engineering in 2005, both from the University of Akron.

About Carnegie Mellon: Carnegie Mellon (www.cmu.edu) is a private, internationally ranked research university with programs in areas ranging from science, technology and business, to public policy, the humanities and the fine arts. More than 11,000 students in the university's seven schools and colleges benefit from a small student-to-faculty ratio and an education characterized by its focus on creating and implementing solutions for real problems, interdisciplinary collaboration and innovation. A global university, Carnegie Mellon's main campus in the United States is in Pittsburgh, Pa. It has campuses in California's Silicon Valley and Qatar, and programs in Asia, Australia and Europe. The university is in the midst of a $1 billion fundraising campaign, titled "Inspire Innovation: The Campaign for Carnegie Mellon University," which aims to build its endowment, support faculty, students and innovative research, and enhance the physical campus with equipment and facility improvements.

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