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Portable Ultrasound Device Quantifies Bladder Volume

A new portable three-dimensional (3D) ultrasound instrument helps reduce catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI) by reducing the use of catheters.

The Verathon BladderScan Prime is a noninvasive bladder volume measurement tool that acquires multiple scan planes inside the body, produces 3D quantification of the bladder, and then automatically calculates and displays urinary bladder volume. To boost reading accuracy among users of varying skill levels, the device provides simple and advanced aiming modes; immediate feedback for off-center scans and pubic bone interference; and onboard help and tutorial assistance accessible at any point during the exam.

Features of the system include a touch-screen interface, live B-mode scanning, and onboard self-diagnostics; for example, in the event of a drop, the ultrasound probe has an internal mechanical diagnostic to confirm it is still functioning properly. Benefits of the system include reducing unnecessary catheterizations; management of Foley catheter use and incontinence issues; and reducing costs and nursing staff time. The Verathon BladderScan Prime is a product of Verathon (Bothell, WA, USA).

“Prime is built to be a workhorse device in any healthcare environment. It is designed to reduce downtime, which in turn raises quality of care,” said David Garner, global director of marketing for imaging & scanning solutions at Verathon. “Prime is designed to help reduce catheter associated urinary tract infections, one of the leading causes of infection in hospitals today, and despite years of efforts, those infection rates aren’t improving. We’re hoping to change that.”

Bladder volume measurement is a well-established metric used in the diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of medical conditions. It is a critical component of a comprehensive catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI) prevention program, an area of intense focus for hospitals as a result of Medicare penalties for hospitals with high rates. These include reducing payments by one percent for hospitals with a high number of hospital acquired conditions (HACs).