For decades heart surgeons have used stents to prop open veins and arteries after angioplasty surgery. Now, a new medical patent aims to help keep the “flow” open in other areas of the body as well.
Allium Medical Solutions Ltd. – developer and manufacture of site-specific stents – has just been granted a patent by the Japanese Patent Office for stents used to treat enlarged prostates.
Allium makes an entire line of stents for use in various places along the urethra. But what makes this one different than their other stents (and ones heart surgeons use) is that instead of a balloon-like stent, this one is shaped like a triangle.
Why Patent a Different Shape?
The prostatic urethral lumen (the part that gets “squeezed” when the prostate is enlarged) has a unique size and shape in each man. Sometimes it’s longer. Sometimes it’s shorter. And each prostate has different contours. Because of this, traditional stents that are cylindrically shaped don’t always do a great job of keeping the flow open.
This new patented medical device takes aim at that problem.
The triangular shape of the stent allows it to fit unique male anatomy better, resulting in higher flow volume and improved comfort compared to existing stents.
It’s called the Triangular Prostatic Stent.
Also – and this is what makes it really unique – it doesn’t put the guy’s voluntary continence mechanism at risk. In plain English, guys can control when they go to the bathroom.
What is a Patent Like this Worth?
Let’s take a look at the numbers…
Prostate cancer develops primarily in men over 50 years old, with more than 80% of men developing prostate cancer before their 80th birthday.
It is the most common type of cancer in men in the United States, with 186,000 new cases in 2008 and 28,600 deaths. It’s the second leading cause of cancer death in men in the U.S. and UK behind lung cancer. And the problem is growing.
And since traditional prostate disease treatments focus on removing the cancer (either through chemotherapy, radiation or surgery), side effects include incontinence and impotence.
Surely, an alternative that reduces these risks would be a welcome option to any patient.
For their efforts, Allium won the 2011 Medical Design Excellence Award competition for the Triangular Prostatic Stent. This competition recognizes the achievements of medical product manufacturers and new medical patents that are changing the face of healthcare.
If you have an idea for a new medical device you think could be patented, request your free “Medical Device Patent Kit” by calling 1-866-433-2288.