OSU Professor invents new technology to tackle ventilator shortage

OSU Associate Professor of Surgery, Dr. Syed Ghazanfar Husain invented a technology to tackle the issue of ventilator shortage. He, firstly illustrated the impacts of the virus spreading massively with the course of time, thus he and his surgery team began caring coronavirus affected patients.

OSU Professor invents new technology to tackle ventilator shortage

OSU Associate Professor of Surgery, Dr. Syed Ghazanfar Husain has invented a technology to tackle the issue of ventilator shortage. Dr. Ghazanfar, firstly illustrated the impacts of the virus spreading massively with the course of time, thus he and his surgery team began caring coronavirus affected patients.

Dr. Ghazanfar Hussain, a Pakistani scientist, an 11-year adept of the Ohio State University (OSU) and the OSU Medical Center, knew Ohio’s efforts at impeding the spread and flattening the curve had been most of the time successful.

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But other states weren’t fortunate as much as Ohio. Dr. Ghazanfar had peers in the State of New York, which had grown into a hotspot, where cases were growing day by day.

Similar to other states where cases were growing rapidly, New York was running out of the personal protective equipment (PPE) such as face shields, facemasks and gloves, and in more dire situations, ventilators.

In fact, the shortage of ventilator in New York ultimately became so dreadful that Gov. Cuomo announced that two patients could be incubated on one machine. It was a move that grabbed skepticism from the medical community.

Dr. Ghazanfar explains, the issue comes from remaining unaware of the amount of ventilation each patient is getting, if two patients are placed one the same machine.

Dr. Ghazanfar, without involving any personal prejudices, condemned the idea of two patients placed on one ventilator by saying: “The problem is unequal distribution between two patients, in a situation where two patients are placed on the same ventilator, you cannot control how much ventilation each patient gets. If one patient has stiffer lungs than the other and needs more air, we have no way of measuring that and making sure that the appropriate patient gets the ventilation that they need”.

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He wondered that there could be a more convenient way to measure the ventilation, ensuring the safety of both patients. He envisioned a flowmeter that could be used to measure the amount of ventilation being distributed to each patient.

Dr. Ghazanfar contacted the Center for Design and Manufacturing Excellence (CDME) to discuss feasibility of production with John Brockbrader and Mary Pancake, CDME Program Managers. Heeding their advice, Dr. Ghazanfar applied for a voucher from the OSU Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) to fund his project.

According to Dr. Ghazanfar: “The CCTS was fantastic, from the time they accepted my application, reviewed it and released the funding was less than 24 hours”.

After receiving funding, engineers developed a prototype for testing. However, Dr. Ghazanfar found himself in a puzzle. His device was only to be used in the worst possible of circumstances.

Although, he gave an exception to test his prototype at the OSU Clinical Skills Education and Assesment Center (CSEAC). Although the pandemic urged the closure of the center, an exception was given to Dr. Ghazanfar to test his prototype in as close to a real-life situation as possible.

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He showed his compassion towards the prototype by showing his optimism towards its testing. The test went better than he expected, surprisingly, the test went perfectly.

The flowmeter could track the level of ventilation going to each patient, and in doing so, they were able to see which patient required more or less of the ventilation.

Dr. Ghazanfar is now hoping to share his device with other medical professionals around the world – Dr. Ghazanfar showed his particular interest in sharing his device with New York, Brazil, India and Pakistan.

After hi great success in his invention, currently Dr. Ghazanfar is writing a scientific paper about the device and its process. Though his project was a massive success, but he hopes to never see the device used in a real-life situation, as it is now.

“We hope that we never have to use the device we developed, but if there is another pandemic like this or a second wave, it is there if we need it”.

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