In a wonderful bout of nominative determinism, Cyrus Doctor has won the Clinical Innovation Award for his ‘Seamless Stitches’ device, which offers “rapid postoperative closure” of patients’ wounds.
Doctor, a trauma and orthopaedic registrar in the NHS in the UK, as well as a participant in the BioInnovate programme in the National University of Ireland, Galway, took top prize with Seamless Stitches.
Taking home a €15,000 grant, Doctor also wins the opportunity to work with award sponsors Cleveland Clinic and Enterprise Ireland to further develop the commercial potential of this innovative technology, with potential for follow-on support through Enterprise Ireland’s Commercialisation Fund.
The likes of using metal surgical staples, which is one current rapid closure method, can result in post-op pain, wound infection and patient dissatisfaction from poor cosmetic results – this means doctors often suture wounds, which takes a fair bit of time.
Doctor’s simple, inexpensive automated Seamless Stitches solution “will provide an enhanced postoperative experience and reduced pain for the patient”, according to the award organisers.
Doctor saw off Professor Ronan Cahill and Dr Brendan Boland to take top prize, with Enterprise Ireland’s director of life sciences, Dr Brian O’Neill, clearly delighted with the standard of products.
“As this device can be used in any surgery requiring closure, the market potential for Doctor’s device is extremely significant,” he said.
“This, coupled with the simplicity of the device design, should also allow a rapid route to market, making it attractive for follow-on investment.”
Cahill designed a single device solution for access in general surgery, while Boland developed a minimally invasive solution to treat arthritis in the hand. The duo will both receive feasibility funding from Enterprise Ireland to investigate the commercial potential of their ideas.
Surgery image, via Shutterstock