Finger protector for surgeons

Description: It is estimated that up to 20% of surgeons will sustain a needle stick injury or cut during their professional careers and that a significant proportion of these will result in viral transmission (Hepatitis B/HIV). The most common location for these injuries is the non-dominant index finger. This is the area of the finger/hand which the needle or scalpel is placed against for support and direction during incision and suturing. We maintain that surgeons require effective protection from injuries sustained inadvertently during the course of surgical procedures. The Finger Protector is a thin, flexible tube which is cut and puncture-resistant. It is open at one end and closed at the opposite end to allow for insertion of the surgeon’s finger (non-dominant index finger). The Finger Protector may be worn either under or over the surgeon’s glove, or (if two pairs of gloves are worn) in between the glove pairs. It is sterile and intended for single-use. The tube tapers outwardly from the closed end to the open end. It extends from the fingertip to at least the second metacarpal-phalangeal joint on one surface and from the fingertip to the third metacarpal-phalangeal joint on the opposite surface. This allows the device to be worn in two ways; one with the longer surface facing the palmar aspect (enhanced protection in deeper body cavities) and one with the shorter surface facing palmar (enhanced flexibility in wider body cavities). The Finger Protector combines levels of proprioception and flexibility suitable for surgical procedures and purposes. Its use will reduce the incidence and extent of needle stick and scalpel injuries as well as the viral transmission inherently associated with these.

Area of Application: A protector for the index finger of surgical personnel during a surgical procedure to prevent needle stick or cut injury.

Lead Investigator: Jill Rabin, MD

Patent Info: US Patent No. 5,842,227, Issued December 1, 1998

Licensing Contact:
Kirk R. Manogue, PhD
Director, Office of Technology Transfer

350 Community Drive
Manhasset, New York 11030
Phone: (516) 562-3404
Fax: (516) 562-2356