Politecnico di Torino - Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 24 - 10129 Torino, ITALY

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autonomous processelectrical bio-impedanceHand-held deviceintravenous catheterizationvenipuncture detection


Peripheral intravenous catheterization (PIVC) is frequently required in hospitals in order to create access to the venous system of patients. However, the operation is very difficult and characterized by very low success rates, especially for pediatrics or special patients. Multiple needle insertions are often happened, which can lead to serious injuries and complications.

Technical features

This invention describes a design that integrates sensing electronics and an actuation module to detect venipuncture instantaneously and stop the needle precisely inside the target blood vessel. To do so, the actuation embodiments described in the invention can disengage the motion of the operator’s hand from the needle insertion motion. Furthermore, the technology can also deliver the cannula into the vein and retract the needle automatically. Although high levels of autonomy are possible based on this invention, in the described embodiments all actions are performed under direct control of the medical operator, following a collaborative device concept.

Possible Applications

  • Catheterization: Insertion of a catheter within a blood vessel;
  • Blood sampling: Insertion of a needle within a blood vessel;
  • Spinal cord puncture;
  • Precision biopsy of tissue;
  • Brachytherapy: Insertion of radioactive seeds inside the patient to treat cancer.


  • Greatly improved catheterization success rates;
  • Low-cost;
  • Light weight and compact;
  • Deskill the procedure and lower the work stress of practitioner;
  • Accurate and fast venipuncture detection;
  • Overshoot prevention even after puncturing a stiff layer of tissue.