Acupuncture Needling Torque Sensor
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant):
Americans spend over $600 million, mostly out-of pocket, on acupuncture services each year. This number will continue to grow as the number of acupuncturists graduating from schools continues to expand. Delivering a high quality acupuncture treatment requires two key synergistic elements: 1) the proper location of appropriate acupuncture points, and 2) the proper manipulation of the acupuncture needle. Despite a growing awareness of the classical importance of proper needling technique, no tool capable of objectively measuring needle manipulation in a clinical setting has ever been developed.
The overall goal of this work is to develop and commercialize a small, hand-held sensor system capable of objectively measuring acupuncture needle torque in a clinical setting. We believe this will have immediate applications in . Acupuncture research - by providing a means to record and/or control the needling stimulus being delivered and correlating needling response to treatment outcome.
. Acupuncture teaching - by allowing students to directly compare their technique to their instructor's.
. Clinical practice - by providing a means to receive feedback and document responses to needling, and match needling techniques to individual patients' conditions.
Our Phase I specific aims are 1) Design and fabricate a prototype needle torque sensor (AcuSensor) and 2) Evaluate its performance in research, educational and clinical settings. Once the feasibility of the AcuSensor has been demonstrated in Phase I, Phase II will include 1) further miniaturizing the device, 2) adding the capability to measure axial needle force and displacement, 3) developing a market strategy targeted to acupuncturists and other clinicians, 4) exploring non-acupuncture applications for this novel miniature torque sensing technology.
We believe that, ultimately, the Acusensor, by providing objective measurement of the effect of needling, will lead to refinement of acupuncture treatment methods, improved treatment efficacy, increased consumer demand for acupuncture treatments and increased integration of acupuncture into our health care system.
Small Business Information at Submission:
MERIDIAN SENSORS, INC.
39 TIMBER LN SOUTH BURLINGTON, VT 05403
Number of Employees: