“Occasionally, a revolutionary product comes onto the market that changes everything.” Most people presumably know this quote by Steve Jobs, co-founder and longtime CEO of Apple Inc. At that time, he was referring to the iPhone, which he introduced at the Macworld Conference in 2007. Touchscreen, Internet communication and cellphone in one housing – most people cannot imagine life without smartphones anymore. Above all, the medical technology industry fascinates time and again with new inventions. One of them is CCSV (Chest Compression Synchronized Ventilation), the revolutionary ventilation mode for cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
The idea behind CCSV
"Resuscitation is one of the most challenging operations for emergency medical services. Every second with chest compressions and oxygen decides the outcome of the patient. WEINMANN Emergency was able to support a research project by Prof. Dr. Kill, which was looking for a solution to precisely this problem. On the one hand, the heart should be further supported and on the other hand, the user should be relieved," explains Matthias Lehmann, Product Manager for CCSV. "In the process, the question was asked: What if you use the ventilation of the lungs for this? What if every chest compression triggered a pressure-controlled ventilation stroke? The idea behind that is actually totally logical."
That is exactly what colleagues thought, as well as doctors and scientists, so that they started studies on CCSV in 2010. A year later, the patent was applied for. “In addition to the question of whether the idea would work at all, it was important for us to find out: Will we then still be able to supply patients with oxygen?”, explains Christian Neuhaus, preliminary developer.
Research phase takes 10 years
Christian was there from the beginning and provided support with all of the studies. First, with a subsidized project in the University of Heidelberg and since 2013, as an employee of WEINMANN Emergency. “In those days, I spent a lot of time in the laboratory and particularly worked on the recording technology, as well as all of the organizational tasks. Later on, I also helped with the programming for MEDUMAT Standard²”, said Christian. “First of all, CCSV was to be developed for MEDUMAT Transport, until it was clear: MEDUMAT Standard² is more suitable for resuscitation in emergency services due to its size and weight”, adds Mathias. It then took several years from the idea until the market launch. At the University of Marburg, physicians under the direction of Prof. Kill, with the support of several doctoral students, carried out tests, evaluated them and published the results scientifically. The tests were followed by evaluations and optimizations, which led to further tests and assessments – again and again. In total, the research phase stretched over 10 years.
Challenge: Testing resuscitation on humans
“During the test phase, we did a lot of testing on dolls and animals. You can’t just simply resuscitate a human. So, the whole time, the question was in the back of our minds: Can we really do that? Can that really work on a human?”, explains Christian. “Everyone involved knew that it would take a long time to develop the idea into a product. But they were convinced that it would help the patients and that it would be worthwhile”, adds Mathias. And it was worthwhile: The studies show that ventilation with CCSV increases arterial blood pressure and improves oxygenation and decarboxylation. “This procedure unique in the world. It is remarkable that we have developed such a revolutionary procedure, as a medium-sized enterprise. That is something that no one else has. We can be extremely proud that we achieved that with the low manpower that was available to us at the time”, summarizes Christian.