Physicians develop device to stop lethal bleeding in soldiers

John Craushorn knows what can happen on a battlefield. This former U.S. Army surgeon, and Birmingham physician developed the abdominal aeortic tourniquet.

Soldiers often die from massive bleeding, due to injuries below the body armor.

"It's that 'Black Hawk down injury', where the wound was too high for a tourniquet and the medic couldn't stop the bleeding," Craushorn said. "The device is made to apply very quickly, inflate it, and then all the bleeding stops."The device compresses the aorta with an inflatable bladder. Effectively cutting down on blood loss ."These wounds are devastating, but we believe they are preventable causes of death, we can actually prevent people from dying if we can simply stop the bleeding," he says.Craushorn says the idea came from a field technique medics used, where they would place their knee on a wounded shoulders abdomen. The tourniquet can save lives during what is called the "golden hour"."The golden hour refers to a time period where, most people, if they reach definitive care, can be resuscitated and saved," Craushorn explains.

The Department of Defense funded the development of the tourniquet. It has received pre market clearance from the Food and Drug Administration.

Craushorn and his co-developer, Dr. Richard Schwartz have found a manufacturer, they already have orders for the device from the military.Craushorn will be teaching courses on how to use the tourniquet in both the military and law enforcement.{}

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