The result was more than just a passing grade or a course credit. They also won the annual National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance (NCIIA) BMEStart undergraduate design competition, which came with a $10,000 award.
The device is used to prevent surgical drains from dislodging following procedures, saving time and medical expense. The device also allows for greater patient mobility and comfort. According to Gates, it “solves a costly and critical health care issue that can currently lead to serious surgical complications.”
The team has filed a provisional patent through Clemson’s Office of Technology Transfer, and hopes to have the device licensed for manufacture by a biomedical device company. The design partnership between the Clemson bioengineering department and the Greenville Hospital System was initiated in 2011.
“This collaboration will accelerate the development of novel surgical tools that can make a significant impact on the care and treatment of our patients,” said Dr. Eugene Michael Langan III, chair of the department of surgery at the hospital.