• Imaging Diagnostic Systems (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) reported the release and publication of select results highlighting the advantages of using CT laser breast imaging as an adjunct to conventional mammography to improve detection of occult cancers in dense breasts. The study demonstrated that, in a dense breast population, the adjunctive use of CTLM, classifying DCIS as malignant, increased sensitivity from 50% to 58.3% over mammography alone and improved specificity from 75.5% to 86.8%. When DCIS is classified as pre-malignant, the figures changed slightly, increasing sensitivity from 43.8% to 56.2% over mammography alone and improving specificity from 73.6% to 84.4%. The difference between the two sets of results reflects that the pathologically ‘benign’ form of DCIS shows angiogenesis in only 30% of cases, whereas comedocarcinoma shows angiogenesis in 75%, an observation that that might prove useful for stratifying DCIS for treatment purposes. Imaging Diagnostic Systems specializes in laser optical breast imaging systems.

• Micro Power (Beaverton, Oregon) said that it has designed and manufactured a new Li-ion battery pack and charger system for Viasys Healthcare ’s (Conshohocken, Pennsylvania) portable ventilators. Portable power systems supplied by Micro Power are currently available with Viasys Healthcare’s LTV series ventilators. Micro Power Electronics has designed a custom portable power system specifically for this life-support device. The ventilator’s new power system consists of two high capacity batteries, each with 95 Wh, that are charged with a micro-controlled power management system. The two-battery design allows the batteries to be “hot swapped” for uninterrupted use and unlimited runtime. The complete power subsystem occupies less space than the previous generation’s battery, yet the runtime, with the two batteries, is increased nearly 50%. The batteries feature the latest in gas gauging, and readouts for remaining runtime, charge time and low power can be read conveniently off the LED display. Micro Power Electronics makes portable power systems for mission-critical equipment.

idly isolate all four pulmonary veins for the treatment of AFib. Approved in Europe, it has treated more than 750 patients in more than 24 centers. Cryopath specializes in cryotherapy products to treat cardiovascular disease.

• Inverness Medical Innovations (Waltham, Massachusetts) said it has received FDA clearance to market the BinaxNOW Malaria test in the U.S. The test is the first and only rapid malaria test available in the U.S. Because of relatively low incidence of malaria, U.S. clinicians are faced with a challenge in the diagnosis and treatment of malaria. Traditional diagnosis of malaria is based on microscopic examination of blood samples. This method is highly subjective and can be difficult for laboratorians who are unaccustomed to diagnosing malaria infections. The BinaxNOW malaria test has been marketed outside the U.S. for nearly 7 years. Inverness Medical Innovations makes diagnostic devices and is presently exploring new opportunities for its proprietary electrochemical and other technologies in a variety of professional diagnostic and consumer-oriented applications.

• Results of a clinical study were presented suggesting a sterile barrier sheath system may eliminate the need for nasendoscope high-level disinfection. One hundred flexible endoscopes using the Slide-On EndoSheath sterile barrier system distributed by Medtronic (Minneapolis) were evaluated for sheath integrity and bacterial contamination after use in patients. The study was conducted at an ambulatory ENT clinic using standard 30 cm flexible nasopharyngoscopes.

Each patient-ready scope was cultured prior to its use for a baseline contamination of insertion tube and control head, after use and removal of the sheath, and post reprocessing. The study showed that following use of the sterile EndoSheath and an enzymatic detergent cleaning and ethanol disinfection procedure, the scopes were negative for any bacterial presence. The ENT business at Medtronic makes products for ear, nose and throat diseases.

• Omni-Tract Surgical (St. Paul, Minnesota) reports the introduction of their new GhosTract radiolucent retractor kit. These blades are designed to retract tissue during anterior lumbar spine procedures. Because these procedures access the spine via an incision in the patient’s abdomen, retractors must be used to maintain a pathway to the spine. The most commonly used retractors are stainless steel, which blocks the intra-operative imaging necessary during these procedures. GhosTract retractor blades are designed to be translucent, allowing the X-ray to “see through” the retractor blades. Omni-Tract Surgical makes table-mounted surgical retractors.

• Sequenom (San Diego) and Lenetix Medical Screening Laboratory (Mineola, New York) reported that Lenetix has submitted a clinical package to the New York State Department of Health to support its application for a clinical laboratory permit to perform a non-invasive prenatal Rhesus D (RhD) incompatibility test, the first non-invasive prenatal test based on Sequenom’s Fetal Nucleic Acid Technology. Lenetix’s RhD application of Sequenom’s fetal nucleic acid technology detects a fetus’ RhD status from the mother’s blood sample without invasive procedures that typically pose risk to the health of the mother and baby in utero. Lenetix makes genetic screening and diagnostic testing products.

Surgical Information Systems (SIS; Atlanta) and Materials Management Microsystems reported the first successful implementation of a bidirectional interface between SIS’ perioperative software solution and the SPM sterile processing information system. The new interface ensures consistency between instrument set descriptions in SPM and in SIS’ preference cards, and provides real-time information on instrumentation requirements necessary for supporting the OR schedule. Efficient and compliant instrument delivery, coordinated with the scheduling function, is an essential component of a streamlined operating room. And because the OR generates the largest revenues and costs in most hospitals, an effective and intuitive interface is of importance. SIS provides surgery management solutions. Microsystems provides bar code driven sterile processing management information systems.