Navigation Links
Baby Bubbler a breath of fresh air

Gently, gently. That's how babies should be handled, and it was the prime consideration when a team of Rice University seniors developed a device that could save babies' lives.

The Baby Bubbler or in its more technical guise, the Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) device helps children with acute respiratory infections breathe naturally as they recover. According to the World Health Organization, about 20 percent of deaths in children under 5 are caused by acute lower respiratory infections; 90 percent of those deaths are caused by pneumonia.

Rice's global health team recognized the need for a portable device for infants that can be taken to countries lacking resources for medical equipment.

"Our device is not a replacement for a ventilator it's a respiratory support device," said Heather Machen, an attending physician in the emergency center and assistant professor of pediatrics at Texas Children's Hospital, who advised the students. "Unlike a ventilator, a patient must be able to breathe on his or her own. With the use of CPAP, many children will be able to recover without a ventilator."

The Baby Bubbler has two main components, said Michael Pandya, a Lubbock, Texas, native who developed it with four other seniors.

One component, a flow generator, pumps air through a tube and allows clinicians to add oxygen if needed. The tube goes from the generator to the infant, who breathes through nasal prongs, and then to the second component, a water bottle that serves as a regulator. "The pressure level to the patient can be changed by adjusting the depth of water in the bottle," Pandya said.

An alarm to detect backflow of water into the line warns doctors if the circuit loses pressure. "It's a simple design, but it's incredibly important in developing countries where the nurse-to-patient ratio is sometimes one nurse for 40 or so patients," he said.

Members of the Baby Bubbler team also included Jocelyn Brown of Pittsburgh, Joseph Chang of Lexington, Mass., Haruka Maruyama of Tokyo, and Katie Schnelle of Cincinnati.

Brown served double duty as the only bioengineering student on the five-member infantAIR team, which brought the Baby Bubbler to Rwanda this spring as part of a global health technology commercialization class offered at Rice University's Jones Graduate School of Business. The team subsequently won $11,750 in the prestigious Rice Business Plan Competition, including first prize for Best Social Venture, and earned honors for Best Engineering Design in Service to Society in this year's Brown School of Engineering Design Showcase.

"This team has been great at understanding the design challenges and addressing them head-on," said Maria Oden, professor in the practice of engineering education and director of Rice's Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen, where much of the work was done. Bioengineers at Texas Children's helped students check the flows and pressures of their device. "That's been very valuable," she said.

Prototypes, which cost about $140 to make, will travel with students this summer as part of Rice's global health initiative, Beyond Traditional Borders. They will be demonstrated in Malawi and Lesotho, the first step toward clinical testing.

In addition, Machen is recruiting local physicians interested in piloting the device and educational materials in their hospitals. "Their input and involvement will be vital to the success of this project," she said.

"The United Nations has designated reducing under-5 mortality by two-thirds by 2015 as one of its Millennium Development Goals," said Machen, who credited Texas Children's Steven Abrams, a neonatologist, and Suzanne Iniguez, a respiratory therapy educator, for their help in realizing the project. "We hope that this bubble CPAP will contribute toward achieving that goal."


Contact: David Ruth
Rice University

Related medicine news :

1. The Acorn Aqua's Lead Free Bubbler
2. Study finds a seasonal variance in sleep-disordered breathing in young children
3. Sleep-disordered breathing is common but hard to detect in pediatric patients
4. Questionnaires help dentists screen for sleep-disordered breathing in children
5. Breathing Exercises May Boost Athletes Performance
6. Exalenz Bioscience Expands Market Coverage for the BreathID Breath Test System
7. 'Winds of Change with Jivi' Breathes New Life to Daytime Talk Show Landscape in Canada
8. Nanotech breath sensor detects diabetes and potentially serious complication
9. GenWay Sponsors the 2nd Annual San Diego Breath of Hope Lung Cancer Walk
10. Premature Birth Ups Risk of Long-Term Breathing Problems
11. Allergy-Linked Mouth Breathing Spells Trouble for Kids
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Baby Bubbler a breath of fresh air
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... On November 23rd 2015 Cozy ... personal heating products business. Cozy Products explains what this means for business moving ... well with the Cozy Products business model: to sell personal heaters that reduce energy ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... of music, friendships, and learning in its 65th Anniversary Brillianteen Revue, scheduled for ... , For 65 years, Brillianteen has been a treasured tradition for ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Missouri (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... HEAL, will provide scholarships for people struggling with eating disorders as a result ... from the second annual event, held at Fox Run Golf Club in Eureka, ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... of philanthropic seniors, is resulting in a way for homeless people to have ... Schaumburg have launched a new initiative whereby they are repurposing plastic bags into ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... Students and ... were awarded to winners of the Create Real Impact awards. California Casualty ... to help stem the tide of distracted and reckless driving, the number one killer ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... DUBLIN , Nov. 25, 2015 Research ... of the "Membranes Market - Global Forecast to ... Asia-Pacific , accounting for 37.21% of the ... Asia-Pacific region is projected to ... This growth has been attributed primarily to the fast ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015 ... of the  "Global Drug Device Combination ... their offering.  --> ... the  "Global Drug Device Combination Products ... offering.  --> Research and ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... -- WuXi PharmaTech (Cayman) Inc. ("WuXi" or the "Company") ... and technology platform company serving the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and ... and the United States ... of shareholders held today, the Company,s shareholders voted in ... previously announced agreement and plan of merger (the "Merger ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: