An innovative bleeding control system developed for the U.S. military has recently been approved for civilian use. The device — known as XStat — uses tiny injectable sponges to provide hemostatic pressure within wound cavities. The system is designed to stop severe bleeding in areas of the body that are difficult to compress or to treat with a tourniquet.
XStat was developed by RevMedX, an Oregon company cofounded by former Army medic John Steinbaugh. The device consists of a syringe-like applicator loaded with 92 cellulose sponges. Each pill-shaped sponge is coated with a blood-clotting agent.
Steinbaugh’s inspiration for XStat was the common kitchen sponge. “We literally went to Williams-Sonoma, brought compressed sponges out of a kitchen store (and) loaded them in homemade syringes,” Steinbaugh told PBS NewsHour. “(We) put them in a model, and they expanded and worked.”