The new virus called SARS-Cov-2 has become the cause of worldwide pandemic. The virus penetrates the lungs of a patient and causes them to inflame. Further, it turns the patient`s lungs into liquid thus disabling its main function: pumping the air through the human body by supplying it with oxygen.
We all know already that 80% of patients recover without any need for special attention. What happens with the 20% that is left? Usually, they need medical attention. When the lungs lose their ability to pump the air, the human body does not get enough oxygen. It leads to death if not treated properly and in a timely manner.
There are several ways to provide the patient`s body with the oxygen to allow it more time to fight the disease. In lighter cases, a special mask might be put on a patient. It pumps oxygen thus saturating with the oxygen the air that comes to the patient`s lungs.
In more difficult cases, a patient needs so-called intubation when a special pipe is inserted in the trachea and the oxygen is pumped directly into the lungs. This way is applied when the lung damages are strong, and the patient cannot breathe independently. ILV is usually applied in Intensive Care Units.
What about Linear Actuators Then?
While it is clear that intubation devices are crucial to give a patient an opportunity to fight COVID-19 and survive, you might be still wondering how 12 and 24 volt actuators can be applied to assist in the situation.
The truth is that linear actuators are an integral part of the most advanced medical equipment. Here, we are not going to talk about devices in general. Yes, there are many medical applications that use linear actuators and that are not connected at all with the treatment from coronavirus infection. But there are systems without which ICU treatment will become either much more complicated or impossible.
Linear Actuators in Bed Lift Systems and Chair Recliners
The everyday life of medical personnel is filled with complicated tasks connected with patient care. Sometimes, a tool that helps to lift a patient or to put him/her in a bed is more important than sophisticated devices that are used rarely. A bed lift and a chair recliner work based on linear actuators.
Thanks to the linear actuators, a nurse can adjust the bed height to the needed to treat the patient and perform the basic care procedures.
A recliner allows the patient to get up and sit or lie down with the minimum help or even independently.
These benefits are crucial when a patient is intubated. In some cases, getting up is impossible or difficult due to the physical condition of the patient because of the equipment. A medical nurse can adjust the height and the inclination angle as needed for a specific procedure.
Linear Actuators in Monitoring Equipment
While the main function of a ventilator is to deliver the oxygen in the lungs of a patient, the device is not only about pumping oxygen. Ventilators are equipped with temperature control and humidifiers. These devices allow providing the air of the same temperature and humidity level that would be supplied to the lungs if the patient could breathe naturally. Usually, the condition of an intubated patient shall be also monitored constantly. It allows medical personnel to react quickly to the changes in the condition of a specific patient.
The control over the air temperature, humidity level, and vital signs is performed with a special device. This device is called a vital sign patient monitor. It allows remote control of the patient`s condition. With it, the medical personnel get more precise information and can take more accurate measures.
This equipment is installed on special adjustable supports. It allows to move the equipment and install it in the most convenient position. For the adjustment systems, again, linear actuators are used. These items allow the device to be adjusted at the most convenient height and angle. It, in turn, facilitates the monitoring and increases the chances of a positive outcome for a patient.
Linear Actuators in X-Ray Machines
X-ray helps to determine whether the lungs of a COVID patient are back to the norm of the patient still needs treatment. Thus, the role of X-ray machines for the diagnostics of lung damages is undeniable. Linear actuators belong to one of the integral parts of any X-ray machine. Thanks to the linear actuators, the system can be adjusted both vertically and horizontally for better positioning. It allows to perform the tests more efficiently. It, in turn, is crucial for the diagnostics and the treatment of any COVID patient.
While linear actuators might be not crucial for treatment systems used to handle COVID patients, but they facilitate many procedures. It, in turn, helps to handle the patients more efficiently.
Hayley Mann is a technology enthusiast specializing in automation methods of ergonomics devices. Her engineering background helps her to create interesting articles on technical topics, making them understandable for all readers.