ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – Sonex Health, A Rochester Company that develops medical tools and technologies, is about to go national with a new surgical tool that could help millions of Americans who suffer from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome affects 12 million Americans each year.
It affects a nerve in the wrist and can cause numbness, pain, weakness and tingling.
To a patient, surgery can be intimidating. So much so that many Carpal Tunnel patients would rather live with the symptoms.
“You can imagine if you’re trying to pick something up you can’t really feel it in your fingers. Or you’re trying to sleep at night and you have this intense pain where you feel like you have to shake your hand a lot,” said Sonex Health CEO & Founder Dr. Darryl Barnes.
The company began in 2014 with the goal of developing ultrasound guided tools that are less invasive than traditional surgery, safer and less expensive.
Using ultrasound imaging to look at the anatomy of the hand, physicians can see the ligament, nerve and artery without making a large incision first.
This is where the SX-One MicroKnife comes in.
“We make a small incision at the wrist here after a local anesthetic and the patient’s wide awake. We place the device underneath the ligament, and then we expand the balloons which we call micro-guards on the side of the device,” said Dr. Barnes. “Once this device is in place, and the balloons are inflated and the tissues that we don’t want to cut are pushed away, the blade can then be exposed. And make the single incision or the transection of the transverse carpal ligament.”
The balloons are then deflated, the device is pulled out and a small dressing is placed on the wrist.
The procedure takes ten minutes.
Dr. Barnes said they registered the tool with the FDA in 2016, and treated their first patient in 2017.
They’ve since conducted more than 1,600 procedures.