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Resorbance and the Future of Medicine

By Daniel Foster18 Mar 2024

Anastomotic patency is paramount to surgical success. If you’ve ever read one of our blogs, then you’re probably expecting this to be CABG-related, but it’s not. At least not yet.

A new technology has just dropped, and it has wonderful implications for anastomotic surgeries across the medical world…

If an anastomosis is not patent, then not only did the surgery fail to accomplish its goal, but the now-leaking anastomosis is adding another layer of its own problems. How would a surgeon check to make sure this has not happened?

Unfortunately, in most cases, they’d have to cut the patient back open again.

Ultrasound is one of the least invasive technologies in existence. Our devices allow intraoperative confirmation of CABG patency while leaving the vessel in its native state. Researchers at Northwestern University and the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have come up with a brilliant new application for this “gentle” technology.

Their concept is medically elegant. A pattern of small metal discs are placed in a tiny, spatiotemporal ph-reactive gel patch. (Functionally, this just means the gel patch will change shape if it is subjected to ph changes.) While the gel itself is not visible to ultrasound, the small metal discs are. These patches can be placed intraoperatively, or in some cases they are small enough to be injected post-surgery. Either way, if a gel patch is placed near a pancreatic anastomosis, for example, a leak would change the normal ph, causing the disc configuration to change in tandem. This change would be visible on a simple, safe, noninvasive ultrasound scan.

Best of all, this technology is bioresorbable. Both the gel and the metal discs dissolve harmlessly once they are no longer needed.

Invasiveness is always the medical elephant in the room, isn’t it? ICG can be used to reveal many problems, but it’s toxic to certain body tissues. An antibiotic may cure infection, but it also reduces your healthy gut flora. In order to excise cancerous tissue, we often have to cut through healthy tissue to reach it. In medicine, that’s the sacrifice we all make, the eternal balance of help vs. harm.

So the future of medicine lies in the development of noninvasive diagnostics and procedures, just like the one above.

No one understands this better than Transonic does. We’ve been using ultrasound to help guarantee anastomotic patency for nearly four decades.

Sometimes the bright new future has been with us all along.

Thanks for reading,


               Transonic Systems, Inc

                              The Measure of Better Results


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Bioresorbable shape-adaptive structures for ultrasonic monitoring of deep-tissue homeostasis | Science