Removing MacGyver Factor from Injured Limb Treatment

A traumatic injury is a very scary thing. But when it occurs on the battlefield, thousands of miles from home, it’s even more frightful.

Severely injured limbs are the most common traumatic injuries for military personnel. And it’s well understood that the faster an injured limb is treated, the better chance there is to save tissue. But that’s a very difficult task when you have to MacGyver a way to quickly treat someone on the frontlines.

The Office of Naval Research is looking to remove the “MacGyver factor” from severely injured limbs and is working on a project (called the Acute Care Cover for Severely Injured Limbs) that seeks a practical solution to this difficult challenge.

The request from ONR is the development of a cover that protects the injured limb and distributes a therapeutic cocktail that mitigates damage and promotes tissue survival. It has to integrate effective active medical ingredients, enhanced wound dressing materials and the healing power of oxygen into a small and convenient lightweight package that can be used in conjunction with a tourniquet.

What does that mean?

The solution has to be something easily carried by military personnel in the field, doesn’t require anyone to improvise something and can keep the wound clean and the injured tissue away from harmful microorganisms. This would buy some time for the injured person to get to a quality medical facility for treatment.

Battelle and Halyard Health are working on the project and have come up with the Battelle Protective Oxygenating Wrap for Enhanced Recovery (POWER). It is light, portable and will suppress microbe proliferation and promote tissue health by delivering oxygen.

See more about this project to improve recovery time and quality of life for a traumatically injured soldier in this Columbus Dispatch story.
October 17, 2016
Battelle Insider
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