Dr Duncan Campbell is a retired anaesthetist with a history of innovative problem solving in his speciality. Duncan’s current work has led to the development of a game changing, patented, non-invasive Cardiac Output Monitor, and is currently working towards commercialisation of this new product.

Campbell Respirator

While Duncan was a full-time anaesthetist, he realised that there was a better solution to ventilating patients in the Operating Theatre than what was available from any product on the market at that time.  Electrical items were discouraged due to the possibility of macro and even micro shock to personnel and patients, so it was initially based on a fluidic control system, and later converted to electronic control when this became acceptable.  This ventilator became the standard ventilator for use in Australian Operating Theatres.

Cardiac Output Monitor

In more recent years, Duncan has turned his attention to another anaesthetic challenge, being the monitoring of Cardiac Output and Tissue Oxygen Delivery in the Operating Theatre. Again, with patient safety and ease of use in mind, his technology is entirely non-invasive, using optical sensors to provide an accurate continuous display of cardiac output and other cardiovascular parameters. The need for this development was seen to exist due to the inaccurate non-invasive monitors currently available for theatre use.

The problem

There are two major problems with the existing types of non-invasive monitors which can be used in the operating theatre: The first is their inability to measure and follow the changes in peripheral resistance, which can vary considerably from moment to moment under the control of the autonomic nervous system. The second problem is inability to measure the considerable variation in arterial elasticity between individuals. The result is poor accuracy and reliability.

The solution

Partnering with Genesys for the development of his Cardiac Output Monitor, Duncan has effectively overcome these problems by specifically obtaining and continually monitoring the value for vascular resistance.  The value for the arterial elasticity is initially measured for each patient, and used to ensure accuracy of the Cardiac Output Display.

The future

At present, only a prototype monitor exists, but extensive trials have confirmed the reliability, accuracy, safety and ease of use for the operating theatre.  The next step is to proceed to production models, but this will involve funding from Venture Capital, Grants, or other means, as costs involved in complying with the TGA requirements are considerable.