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An antibiotic delivery system to manage diabetes related foot infections

The technology will enable the localised delivery of high dose antibiotics to the lower limb in diabetes patients suffering life or limb threatening foot infections.
Professor Peter Colman, Director, Diabetes and Endocrinology, Royal Melbourne Hospital 

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  • Government funding has allowed Osprey Medical to develop a localised delivery of high dose antibiotics to the lower limb in diabetes patients suffering life or limb threatening foot infections, thus improving patient outcomes.

An Antibiotic Delivery System to manage diabetic foot related infections

For a transcript of this video, please view it on Youtube 

The Challenge

Osprey Medical has been working with Royal Melbourne Hospital’s Diabetic Foot Unit to further develop and validate an antibiotic delivery system to manage diabetes related foot infections. The challenge was to meet a critical clinical need in the treatment of refractory wound infections. Refractory infections are one of the primary reasons for patients with diabetes being admitted to hospital, requiring surgery and ultimately lower limb amputation. As patients with diabetes have an impaired immune response, these infections often penetrate to involve deeper structures (such as bone) and may become systemic and involve joints or heart valves. These patients also frequently suffer severe peripheral vascular disease, which prevents antibiotics reaching effective concentrations in the infected tissue, thus delaying or preventing successful management.

The Solution

The technology, initially developed at Melbourne’s Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute, will enable the localised delivery of high dose antibiotics to the lower limb in patients suffering life or limb threatening foot infections.

The limb recovery system will leverage technology designed to reduce kidney injury from radiological contrast used during heart procedures and allow clinicians to use existing antibiotic therapies. The technology enables the circulation of the limb to be isolated and separated from the general circulatory system, permitting the delivery of high dose antibiotics directly to the infected area. The system administers antibiotics via catheters inserted into the major artery and vein of the lower limb, creating an artificial circuit.

The result

The localised delivery of high dose antibiotics will help improve patient treatment outcomes and help minimise the risk of amputations for patients suffering from foot infections.