SOURCE: Spiracur Inc.

Spiracur Inc.

October 05, 2011 09:30 ET

Spiracur Donates 25 SNaP Wound Care Systems for UCSF IGOT Use and Training in Tanzania

SUNNYVALE, CA--(Marketwire - Oct 5, 2011) - Spiracur Inc., developer of an ultraportable and disposable negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) device, announced the donation of 25 SNaP® Wound Care Systems for teaching and use in Tanzania by the Institute for Global Orthopaedics & Traumatology (IGOT), a non-profit program started by the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. The expeditions to Tanzania and other developing countries are part of a large-scale study to understand patient care and assess the burden of disease in resource-poor countries in comparison to resource-rich countries.

The focus of the Tanzania expedition, under the guidance of Amir Matityahu, M.D., assistant clinical professor, UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, and director of Pelvis and Acetabular Trauma Reconstruction at San Francisco General Hospital and the Orthopaedic Trauma Institute (OTI), is to offer academic orthopaedic surgeons the ability to collaborate with fellow surgeons at the Muhimbili Orthopedic Institute in Dar as Salaam, introduce the SNaP device, teach, learn and gather data for research.

As with several underserved areas, there is a prevalence of people suffering open, non-healing wounds in Tanzania due to a lack of governmental support for trauma and safety systems. There are no emergency medical services and hospitals are overcrowded; therefore patients suffering open wounds may go for days without treatment. In addition, patients are required to pay a deposit before entering a hospital, as well as provide payment for daily care, including gauze and dressings, and surgery.

"In Tanzania, it is very common for a patient who comes to the hospital with an open wound to lay in the hallway for days before treatment is administered," Dr. Matityahu said. "The conditions are not sanitary and electrical power is erratic at best. Often, patient's wounds will drain openly attracting flies and other insects.

"One patient which I treated was admitted to the hospital with a closed tibia fracture that eventually opened up because the bone eroded through the skin," Dr. Matityahu continued. "This patient was laying in the ward for five weeks in traction before he was seen by us. We successfully treated this patient, as well as others utilizing the SNaP System. In addition, surgeons at Muhimbili Orthopedic Institute learned to apply the portable negative pressure therapy device to patients."

The focus of IGOT is to support efforts that go beyond simple volunteerism, and establish on-going links with orthopaedic surgeons and educational entities in underserved areas to assist them in attaining and sustaining improvements in orthopaedic care. IGOT currently has links with educational institutions in Uganda, South Africa, Afghanistan and Nicaragua. IGOT is also developing relationships with Kenya, Tanzania, and Ghana. Residents and faculty have visited and worked in these sites, and have laid the groundwork for data-gathering studies to assess the local infrastructure, resources and educational needs. This work is followed up by collaborative interventions with measurable outcomes.

"Healthcare in the United Republic of Tanzania is severely strained due to an acute shortage of caregivers and clinicians, poor working conditions and limited training programs," said Rick Coughlin, M.D., M.Sc., Director of IGOT and Clinical Professor of Orthopaedics in the UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. "Health standards in Tanzania fall well behind most other developing nations, therefore the need for training and education is critical. This research project is designed to analyze the detriments in inequity in the burden of orthopaedic injuries, and provide solutions with training to decrease these inequities."

The SNaP System (Smart Negative Pressure®) is an easy-to-use device that is completely silent and lightweight, weighing only 2.2 ounces. The system requires no electricity or batteries, which offers a reliable clinical solution in resource poor countries. In a U.S. multicenter randomized-controlled trial (RCT), the SNaP device demonstrated similar healing to a traditional electrically powered pump device for refractory chronic wounds. To date, this 17-center study is the only head to head RCT done comparing NPWT devices. The study also demonstrated that the SNaP system was easier to use, it improved quality of life, and it required half the time of skilled nursing staff to apply to wounds. In addition to Tanzania, the SNaP System has been donated to relief efforts in Haiti.

"It is a privilege to be working with Dr. Matityahu and his team by donating SNaP systems to this critically important project," said Gary Restani, president and CEO, Spiracur Inc. "We believe many lives will be positively impacted as the IGOT expeditions and research continues in Tanzania, coupled with the training and collaborative efforts between Dr. Matityahu, the OTI team and the surgeons at the Muhimbili Orthopaedic Institute."

About Spiracur Inc.
Spiracur Inc., headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., is a privately held medical device company focused on the development of innovative wound healing technologies. Spiracur was founded out of the Stanford Biodesign Innovation Program in 2007. Its first product, the SNaP Wound Care System, is the result of patient and clinician feedback that current negative pressure wound therapies were too cumbersome. The SNaP Wound Care System was cleared by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) in August 2009 in a new therapy category defined as "non-powered" NPWT devices, and the company obtained CE Mark for the device in December 2010. For more information, please visit

Spiracur, Spiracur logo, SNaP, SNaP & Design and Smart negative Pressure are registered trademarks of Spiracur Inc.

Disclaimer: The information stated above was prepared by Spiracur to report on the collaboration between IGOT and Spiracur, and reflects solely the opinion of Spiracur. Nothing in this statement shall be construed to imply any support or endorsement of Spiracur or any of its products, by The Regents of the University of California, its officers, agents and employees.

Dr. Matityahu will not receive compensation from Spiracur.

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