20 Dec Innovation with impact: Al Mahmoud Medical Center adopts the geko™ device
A rising risk
Venous thromboembolism (VTE) – more commonly known as a blood clot – is one of the leading causes of death globally, with one in four people dying every year. The risk of VTE increases by up to five times during pregnancy with 1-2 women in every 1,000 suffering from a VTE during gestation or the 12-weeks immediately after birth.
This is because the blood clots more easily during pregnancy to lessen blood loss during labour and delivery. There can also be less blood flow to the legs later in pregnancy because the blood vessels around the pelvis are pressed upon by the growing baby.
The age of MedTech
To counter this increased risk of VTE, the Al Mahmoud Medical Center in Qatar – led by Dr Mohammad Chikh Atieh – is the first medical clinic in the country to adopt the geko™ device for the prevention of VTE in obstetrics, gynaecology, and all aspects of general surgery.
Its pioneering team of physicians, nurses, and staff are focused on continually improving patient safety and the quality of care, including the implementation of ground-breaking and clinically proven medical technology (MedTech) such as the geko™ device.
This landmark moment means patients being treated at the clinic – including expectant mothers – can now have a viable alternative to standard of care.
Setting a new standard
Traditionally, pregnant patients are prescribed anticoagulant drugs which, although highly effective, carry a bleeding risk in maternal patients assessed as high-risk. In these cases, the guidelines support the use of Intermittent Pneumatic Compression (IPC) – a boot-like cuff that actively compresses the leg, mimicking the action of the leg muscle pumps and sending blood back to the heart.
However, for a growing number of pregnant patients, IPC is impractical due to its restriction on their mobility. Nursing staff also require care accurately to fit the cuffs and pneumatic pumps are not always readily available. In the absence of an appropriate alternative therapy, these pregnant patients receive no VTE prophylaxis, and the risk of fatal blood clots remains. This will no longer be the case for patients at the Al Mahmoud Medical Center.
Announcing the news, Dr Mohammad Chikh Atieh, Consultant Internal Medicine, said: “The geko™ device has a promising medical future and we are delighted that our patients can now be among the first to benefit from a true hospital-to-home treatment that we can include in all our specialties; in particular, pregnancy-related VTE which is a major cause of maternal death.”
The geko™ device, powered by its revolutionary OnPulse™ neuromuscular electrostimulation technology, can also address the silent burden of oedema for which, currently, few tools are available to treat complications that can hinder wound closure and halt healing.
Under Dr Atieh’s leadership, the clinic is now exploring the wider use of the geko™ device to tackle complications related to oedema in diabetes mellitus, diabetic foot and lower extremity disorders – and in the disease of arterial hypertension and post-myocardial infarction.
Collaborating on care
The adoption of the geko™ device into clinical practice at the Al Mahmoud Medical Center is a result of a long-term, collaborative partnership between Sky Medical Technology, Al Raya Medical Equipment (a leading medical equipment distributor based in Qatar) and the pioneering Dr Atieh and his clinical team.
Bernard Ross, CEO at Sky Medical Technology, adds: “We are delighted that Dr Atieh and his team can reap the benefits of the geko™ device. Patients can wear the device before and after surgery, during antenatal procedures and continue the same level of medical treatment comfortably at home. The practicality and convenience of the geko™ device promotes greater compliance and better patient outcomes, and we thank our distributor partner, Al Raya Medical Equipment in Doha, for their support in the geko™ adoption process, which also delivers cost savings for Al Mahmoud Medical Center.”
To discover more about the use of the geko™ device at the Al Mahmoud Medical Center, read our press release here.