A Bioelectronic Sensor That Monitors Bladder Function!


A study titled “A wireless, implantable bioelectronic system to monitor urinary bladder function following surgical recovery” presents the first instance of a bioelectronic sensor that allows for continuous bladder function monitoring over an extended period of time.

While the normal individual does not need this new gadget, those who have paralysis, spina bifida, bladder cancer, or end-stage bladder disease can benefit from it. In such conditions, bladder function is frequently reduced, and bladder reconstruction surgery may be necessary. They may find it to be a game-changer. Additionally, the sensor system can help doctors watch patients continually and remotely. So they can decide on treatments more quickly and intelligently.

Northwestern’s Guillermo A. Ameer, who co-led the work, said

To empty the bladder, they often have to use catheters, which are uncomfortable and can lead to painful infections. We want to eliminate the use of catheters and bypass current bladder function monitoring procedures, which are highly invasive, very unpleasant and must be done in a hospital or clinical setting

Working Method and Initial Results

The new bioelectronic sensor uses several sensors to monitor the bladder, all of which combine to measure one straightforward parameter strain. Moreover, the bladder enlarges as it fills and expands to its maximum capacity. The elastic-like device is pulled by this stretching, which indicates strain. Similarly, the bladder contracts to release pressure as it empties. Embedded Bluetooth technology allows the device to transfer strain-level data to a smartphone or tablet as soon as the sensors pick it up.

Rogers said

The key advance here is in the development of super soft, ultrathin, stretchable strain gauges that can gently wrap the outside surface of the bladder, without imposing any mechanical constraints on the natural filling and voiding behaviors

Ameer said

“In addition to monitoring the filling, the app will be able to send warnings to the patient and then direct them to locations for the nearest restrooms

Also, one day, patients will be able to trigger urination, on demand, through their smartphone.”


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