‘It could save us a few seconds’: Unique ultrasound device used to help patients

Local News

EDINBURG, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Over the years medical technology has advanced at an enormous rate.

DHR Health is using a device called the “Butterfly IQ Ultrasound”. They said it is cutting back on time needed to save patients and cutting back on expenses.

DHR Health Trauma Medical Director Dr. Jeffrey Skubic said the portable device can limit the time they need to help save a patient’s life. 

“We’re doing more and more ultrasounds at the bedside. We call it Point of Care Testing. Instead of being wheeled away at the radiology suite, we bring it right to the bedside”, said Dr. Skubic.

“I can perform ultrasounds that are connected right to this wire right to my iPhone or iPad and I can now take this with me anywhere and do ultrasounds.

DHR Health is looking to spread their success of using the tech-savvy device throughout the hospital to in the field with EMS.

“We’re working on a research project where we’re going to have our EMS providers carry this on the helicopter for instance,” said Dr. Skubic. 

The device is also cheaper than their previous “traditional” ultrasounds. Dr. Skubic said it is saving the hospital thousands of dollars.

“The traditional ultrasound machines are typically $50,000 to $75,000 for one,” said Dr. Skubic.

The device would allow EMS to send DHR doctors’ ultrasound scans as they head to the hospital. Chris Cisneros, who has 20 years experience said it is remarkable to see the evolution of technology.

“We don’t have that many tools to see what’s going on inside the patient’s body so adding this Butterfly IQ, that we partnered with DHR, allows us to see what’s going on the inside. So with this, it could save us a few seconds,” said Cisneros.

Which in his field he said seconds matter. It would also give the DHR Health Trauma Team more time to prepare for the patient’s arrival before they come to the hospital. 

“We haven’t had that capability before for them to be able to transmit images and video of ultrasound of a patient in the field where I can look at it in the cloud,” said Dr. Skubic.

The cloud acts as one massive hard drive of storage that in this case is helping doctors and Dr. Skubic said it gives patients a window for lifesaving time.

”In trauma, we have something called the golden hour.” Dr. Skubic goes on to say, “we know roughly that if you intervene within the hour we have the chance to save that patient so that allows me to prepare and get ready sooner rather than later.”

Dr. Skubic said they are expecting the study with EMS using the Butterfly IQ Ultrasound to be approved by January.

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