University of Wisconsin Doctor Creates Pressure Monitor

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dr medow explaining his pressure monitorDr. Josh Medow first came into contact with hydrocephalus as a resident in a Madison, WI hospital and right away recognized a major issue while treating a child with a suspected shunt failure.  Medow realized that there was no quick, unobtrusive way of checking intracranial pressure.

 

 

Today, Dr. Medow is an attending neurosurgeon at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and has combined his love of tinkering with electronics and his inventors spirit to come up with what he hopes will be a solution.  He is trying to patent a device that will allow doctors, and perhaps even parents, to monitor intracranial pressure non-invasively.

The silicone implant, which sends electronic signals to a handheld device, started off as a prototype in his basement resulting from a few trips to Radio Shack.  After ten years of design and trying to find academic and scientific interest in his invention, Dr. Medow hopes to see his device advance to human trials within the next couple of years.

Having taken an interest in hydrocephalus early in his career, Dr. Medow has already made contributions in the field.  He was the 2002 co-recipient of the Hydrocephalus Associations Residents Prize for his paper titled, “Quick Brain MRI verses CT scan for evaluating Shunted Hydrocephalus”.

To read more, please click on the link below:

http://host.madison.com/news/local/health_med_fit/article_ba627bc2-fe9b-11e0-802d-001cc4c03286.html

13 Comments for : University of Wisconsin Doctor Creates Pressure Monitor
    • Bernice Margolis
    • December 14, 2011
    Reply

    I am an 84 year old woman who was diagnosed with NPH at age 66. I became symptomatic about 4 years later, but was told by a well-regarded neurosurgeon that nothing could be done for me and that my sympoms would progress. I was losing motor control and “slowing down”…My husband went on line to the Hydrocephalus Assoc. and received a packet of information AND a list of neurosurgeons
    who had experience in implanting a shunt system. At age 76 I had a very successful surgery and immediate positive results! I have needed a few adjustments to the valve (Codman), but fortunately have not required any revision.
    I know of a physician in the area who was diagnosed with Alzeimers and fortunately sought a second opinion. He has NPH and 2 years ago had successful surgery AND returned to his practice.

    • Lou Senatore
    • November 20, 2011
    Reply

    A non-invasive ICP monitor would be fabulous. Our daughter has had to have 3 or 4 (I lost count) and with the last two she developed a severe infection. We never know if her headaches are shunt related or just a temporary imbalance of CSF.

    • Bruce Cattie
    • November 14, 2011
    Reply

    Having a daughter with Hydrocephalus and seeing how it impacts her life and well being, I am extremely encouraged by the clinical research that is being done by professionals like yourself. There seems to be quite a bit of advancement in the industry today regarding non-invasive monitors that can communicate to patients about the current status of a variety of vital signs and real time measures that can help patients of all kinds with chronic healthcare and life quality issues. Whether the life improvement solutions come from implanted devices using nanotechnology or innovative scanning/monitoring capabilities as described in a previous post, I would hope that the research and efforts being made currently in this area will continue to bring advanced solutions to help all who need to manage the various aspects of hydrocephalus in their respective lives. Please continue the great work and caring that you are demonstrating on behalf of all families impacted by this.

    • Ed R
    • November 10, 2011
    Reply

    God’s spead to your invention devolopment! My son is 15 years old, 6′ 200 lbs, and has his original vp shunt that was placed at 3 months of age. He is at the top of his honor’s class accademically, and is physically fine. We have had several close calls, headaches, vision issues, nausia, etc. Our neuro waited for more conclusive symptoms, but we were guessing and watching close by. If my son had your device, we would know what’s what without risking infections. This could save unnecessary surgeries, reduce risks of waiting too long for needed surgeries, and save insurance companies millions!

    • Stan White
    • November 9, 2011
    Reply

    I’m an 80-year old who developed adult-onset hydrocephalus (NPH) some years ago and have had one revision. My doc is not local, so an ICP monitor would be a wonderful anxiety-relieving bit of instrumentation. I am symptom free as long as I am over-pressure free, but of course, the onset of the symptoms indicate that the overpressure has been present for a sufficiently long period to have induced problems. I am petrified of the possibility of suffering irreversible damage because of delayed detection and correction.

  1. Reply

    I have had a shunt for 19 years and now 9 revisions. Because of complications and confusion over my shunt malfunctions in the first few years of being shunted, and with a medical imaging and tech background, I created a non-invasive method for hydrocephalus monitoring I termed the DiaCeph Test. The DiaCeph concept is based on standardization of symptoms as markers of shunt performance, an establishment of baseline markers, and then analysis of malfunction data when a problem is suspected. DiaCeph could be an app for a mobile phone today, similar to an app I’d like to create for migraine headaches (incl. barometric pressure readings).

    It is good to think big, but you still need to think simple. With a mobile phone app, you do not need to surgically revise a patient to implant a sensor as you would Dr. Medow’s device. Plus, a non-invasive method of monitoring concussion, the Impact Test (developed around the same time I created DiaCeph), has made a huge contribution in the management of sports concussion today.

    I look to see progress in Dr. Medow’s device. Let us not abandon our advocacy. I wish we had a fraction of the advocacy received last month for breast cancer awareness. You ask people about hydrocephalus, and most still don’t know what it is.

    Lastly, for any who care, I am advocating for “sound and sensory integration disorders” protections for those of us who are affected and made ill by loud/repetitive noises. This is a widespread problem in public places, and I believe it should be afforded ADA handycap accessibility protections. I estimate the number of Americans impacted by sensory integration disorders, or sensory processing disorders, is greater than all other handycaps combined, as it is so common to many disorders.

    Thanks

    • Norma
    • November 9, 2011
    Reply

    Dr. Medow, thank you so much for such a wonderful blessing. For those of us parents that have children with Dandy-Walker Hydrocephalus, our hearts ache each time our children suffer from pain and surgeries, we are thankful to you for caring, going the extra distance, that no other has achieved. I am hopeful that this breakthrough will cause other physicians to step forward and develop new technology for our amazing children who endure and rise above all obstacles. My daughter was diagnosed in 1989 and has had approximately 40-50 brain surgeries. She is 22, married with two beautiful children. She is an amazing women who I am thankful for each day. Your invention of the pressure monitor is truly amazing and we look forward to its’ positive outcomes.

    Thank you so much.

    • ashley
    • November 9, 2011
    Reply

    Hello I am 22 years old. I have had over 40 brain operations in the past 4 years. I am now still stable with my shunt now but my neuro thinks he may need to put in a second shunt.. but that would mean I need to get icp monitor. I would be extremely greatful I hope this monitor works out and we would be able to try it out.

    • Chrissy
    • November 9, 2011
    Reply

    Hi! I am 30 with a VP shunt. I have been shunted since birth, and have developed slit vents, so Ct’s are about useless with me. I have also developed overdrainage issues. This would be awesome for me to be able to know whats going on in there without “looking under the hood” as my doc puts i

    • Elisabeth Sundoy
    • November 9, 2011
    Reply

    What a relief this will be for so many people! I have a daughter who has been through 9 operations due to shunt failure and pressure problems. Good luck to you in your work dr. Medow! The Hydrosephalus patients need people like you!
    Greetings from Norway!

    • Nichole
    • November 4, 2011
    Reply

    I also have a ten year old son with a vp shunt. He aquired this when we found he had a brain tumor at the begining of this year. I was just in the hospital week because of the shunt. It has already been revised once this year. He has only had the shunt for 7 months. This devise sounds great. Will love to see what this device can do when it is finished.

    • Mel
    • October 29, 2011
    Reply

    What a great advancement this could be! We have a 10 year old with a VP shunt….. I can just inagine the worry this would relieve!!!

    • jake chambers
    • October 29, 2011
    Reply

    I have had 10 revisions, i am 29 and have been extremley fortunate in the fact that through all my complications with hydrocephalus I have emerged with virtually no health problems to speak of when compared to others with this disease. My questions are what is this devices life span, is it more durrable than a shunt, and when do you think this device will be inplimented into patients? Do you feel this device will be used in everyone with a shunt or just children? Oh great invintion by the way, its people like you that inspire the rest of us, keep up the good work.

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