xstat dressingIt is safe to say that most of us have had the good fortune of never experiencing what it would be like to be shot by a gun. However in the event that you do get shot by a gun, you might be relieved to learn that the FDA has recently approved a sponge-filled syringe that basically helps plug bullet wounds.

Dubbed the Xstat Rapid Hemostasis System, this syringe isn’t new but in the past, it was only approved for military use, but with the FDA’s blessing, it looks like civilian first responders will soon be able to start using them on the job as well. As the photo above suggests, this syringe works by injecting small cellulose sponges into wounds that would otherwise cannot be stopped by more traditional methods like a tourniquet.

These sponges have the ability to expand on contact with blood in 20 seconds, thus blocking the blood from flowing out of the body. This is only a temporary measure at least until the person can be taken to the hospital, but it has the potential to save a lot of lives. According to the US Army, it was found that 30-40% of civilian deaths from trauma are the result of hemorrhaging, and that 33-56% of those do not even survive a trip to the hospital.

According to the FDA’s acting director of device evaluation, William Maisel, “When a product is developed for use in the battlefield, it is generally intended to work in a worst-case scenario where advanced care might not be immediately available. It is exciting to see this technology transition to help civilian first responders control some severe, life-threatening bleeding while on the trauma scene.”

Filed in Medical >Military. Read more about and .