NIR (Near- Infrared Technology)

Industry: Retained surgical instrument prevention

A “retained surgical instrument” is an item, often a sponge or needle, accidentally left inside of a patient after surgery has been completed. The ramifications of these mistakes are dire. 

The NIR project, developed at Georgia State, is a method of using near infrared (NIR) dye to mark surgical sponges, making them easy to detect. The dye is approved by the FDA.

Beyond the implications for patient health and mortality, retained surgical instruments cost the healthcare industry $2 billion per year. The NIR project is being evaluated for its cost and marketability.

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