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Sengstaken-Blakemore Tube

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This Global Health Medical Device is designed for or implemented within resource-limited settings - Browse the devices - Add a device

Health Topic Maternal mortality
Classification Treatment
Scope Commercialized
Location Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, South America

Problem being addressed[edit]

Post Partum Hemorrhaging (PPH) is one of the leading causes of death among women in developing countries. The World Health Organization says that one woman dies every minute from a complication related to pregnancy or childbirth. Health interventions designed to decrease maternal mortality, specifically ones that can treat and/or prevent PPH can have a significant impact in saving mothers' lives around the globe.

Detailed description of the solution[edit]

The Sengstaken Blakemore tube is a medical device created in the 1950s. Since then has been modernized and commercialized for widespread use to treat bleeding esophageal varices. In addition, it is used for the treatment of post partum hemmorage through uterine tamponade. The tube is made out of flexible plastic tube and is inserted through mouth or nose for upper gastrointestinal-related hemorrhage. Traction is usually applied to the tubes to aid in reducing blood flow to the varices. To control PPH, the distal part of the tube is cut and removed to facilitate insertion and retention in the uterus. The balloon at the end of the tube is filled with warm sterile saline (or water) until the uterus is firm i.e. upon abdominal palpation. The inflated balloon (and the pressure) stops the bleeding, dilates the cervix and actually becomes visible vaginally. This device is valuable because it may prevent the need for surgery.

Designed by[edit]

  • Designed by: This device was invented by Dr. Robert W. Sengstaken and Dr. Arthur H. Blakemore in 1950.


Peer-reviewed publication[edit]

Chan et al (1997, August). The use of a Sengstaken-Blakemore tube to control post-partum hemmorhage. International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics. Vol. 52(2) pp 251-252.

Externally generated reports[edit]

Treger et al. (2011) Sengstaken-Blakemore Tube. Medscape. Link available here.

Doumouchtsis, S.K., et al., Management of postpartum hemorrhage by uterine balloon tamponade: Prospective evaluation of effectiveness. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica, 2008. 87(8): p. 849-855. ^ Westphal K (1930). "Ueber eine Kompressionsbehandlung der Blutungen aus Oesophagusvarizen". Deutsch Med Wochenschr 56 (27): 1135.

... more about "Sengstaken-Blakemore Tube"
Africa +, Asia +, Australia +, Europe +, North America +  and South America +
Commercialized +
Maternal mortality +