As anyone that has ever given blood knows, the last thing you want is for the medical professional to have a hard time finding a good vein. Some people avoid giving blood altogether because of one bad experience. People that have to take medication intravenously don’t have the option of just avoiding the experience. Part of the reason may be that they fear these multiple needle sticks. It is estimated that 30 percent of patients require more than one stick. And with 70 percent of medical decisions being informed by diagnostic tests including blood draws, medical companies are taking notice and looking for ways to improve the experience.

Christie Medical Holdings has created an innovative device to help with this problem. This VeinViewer is designed to help medical professionals locate the correct vein right away. This device has been proven to make needle sticking a quicker and less invasive procedure. According to Christie Medical Holdings the first stick success rate jumps to 100 percent, decreases medically unnecessary peripherally inserted central catheter lines by more than 30 percent, and doubles patient satisfaction.

Americans stick a lot of needles in their veins. There’s an estimated 2.7 million vein sticks every day in the U.S., and blood tests inform over 70 percent of medical decisions. Venipuncture is a ubiquitous function of modern medicine; between blood draws for annual checkups, IVs, blood donations and more, nurses are constantly seeking out the right vein to delicately skewer.

But despite the pervasiveness of the procedure, drawing blood remains an arduous task. Finding a vein is often difficult; an estimated 30 percent of patients require multiple sticks.

Although VeinViewer is making an impact they aren’t the only one making a device to help with the accuracy needle sticks. AccuVein, a New York–based company, recently developed a device that is aiming to give medical professionals confidence when using a needle. Their device scans a patient’s arm, the musculature appears red, and the veins show as dark lines.

Both technologies work by using near-infrared (NIR) light onto the patients skin. Their blood absorbs the light and the surrounding tissue reflects the NIR back to the device. The device then sends data back to the surface of the skin with green light added for contrast. The device is able to “see” 10 mm below the surface of the patients skin giving the medical professional a precise look at where the veins are located.

Devices like the VeinViewer and AccuVein are improving patient care by helping medical professionals care for their patients in ways that improve the patient experience and quickly are becoming a standard in healthcare.

About the Author:

As Managing Director of Innovation for Syneos Health Communications, Leigh is responsible for shaping the company’s perspective on the next era of healthcare marketing. Through thought leadership, strategic innovation workshops and new products and capabilities, Leigh focuses on identifying marketing approaches that will fuel that new era and generate significant growth for clients. Leigh has worked with Fortune 1000 companies to craft their digital, mobile, social and CRM strategies for over 17 years. She’s worked for category-leading agencies in retail, public affairs, B2B technology, and higher education. Prior to moving to Syneos Health Communications, she had several leadership roles at one of our agencies, GSW. There, she founded an innovation practice fueled by the zeitgeist and spearheaded digital and innovation thinking across the business. Leigh has taken a special interest in complex healthcare products that can change lives in meaningful ways. She was recently a strategic lead on the 3rd largest launch in pharmaceutical history: Tecfidera. Before that she had keys roles with Eli Lilly Oncology, Abbott Nutrition, Amgen Cardiovascular, and Eli Lilly Diabetes. A critical part of Leigh’s work is trends and new ideas. Every year, she convenes a group of trend watchers from across our global network to identify the shifts most critical to healthcare marketers. Leigh is a sought-after writer and speaker. Recognized as one of the most inspiring people in the pharmaceutical industry by PharmaVoice, Leigh also was recognized as a Rising Star by the Healthcare Businesswomen's Association (HBA) for her overt passion, industry thought leadership and significant contributions in new business, strategy and mentoring.