Baxter International Inc. and VIPUN Medical, a company developing technology solutions to help improve medical nutrition, today announced an agreement to commercialize the VIPUN Gastric Monitoring System. This innovative system features a “smart” enteral feeding tube designed to measure stomach motility in order to help clinicians identify enteral feeding intolerance and make better-informed nutrition therapy decisions in the intensive care unit (ICU) and other settings. As part of the agreement, Baxter will support clinical studies required to achieve regulatory approval in key markets worldwide and gain global distribution rights. Additional terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
“The VIPUN Gastric Monitoring System will be an important addition to Baxter’s nutrition portfolio,” said Jorge Vasseur, general manager of Baxter’s Clinical Nutrition business. “While indirect calorimetry can help determine individual energy requirements, the VIPUN Gastric Monitoring System is designed to help address the need for accurate, real-time detection of tolerance to enteral feeding. For patients intolerant to enteral nutrition, our broad portfolio of parenteral nutrition products is available to help ensure they get the nutrients they need.”
Enteral feeding intolerance (EFI) is a serious problem among patients in the ICU. Approximately four in 10 patients in the ICU will experience EFI, which often leads to inadequate amounts of nutrition delivered to the patient and contributes to their malnutrition risk.1,2 EFI is associated with negative clinical outcomes like pneumonia, longer length of hospital stay and higher mortality rate.3,4 Diagnosis, treatment and monitoring of EFI are difficult as they require the evaluation of multiple clinical signs and symptoms, some of which are subjective and controversial, time consuming for clinicians, and vary between clinicians and centers.3 For patients who cannot tolerate enteral nutrition, parenteral nutrition may be the treatment modality used to reach nutrition targets.
“This innovative technology has the potential to significantly change the way clinicians provide nutrition therapy and directly enhance care of the most vulnerable patients,” said Nico Van Tichelen, CEO of VIPUN Medical. “In Baxter, we have found a partner who shares our commitment to helping to improve the practice of medical nutrition as well as the resources and expertise to make this technology available to clinicians and patients who need it most.”