REX Health Ventures Invests in Gauss Surgical to Identify and Treat Postpartum Bleeding
REX Women’s Center began using Gauss technology in March to improve maternal care
RALEIGH, N.C. – Oct. 17, 2018 – REX Health Ventures, the venture capital fund run by UNC REX Healthcare, has contributed to a new round of $20 million in funding raised by Gauss Surgical, a medical-technology company based in Silicon Valley.
Gauss Surgical’s flagship product, Triton, monitors surgical blood loss in real time using digital imaging and machine learning on the iPad. The REX Women’s Center in Raleigh, one of the busiest birth centers in North Carolina, began using the Triton technology in late March to monitor blood loss during all baby deliveries.
“Using this technology to quantify blood loss for every delivery has helped improve our ability to recognize bleeding issues early, and intervene quickly to prevent more serious problems,” said April Lalumiere, director of the REX Women’s Center. “The technology is very easy to use, and our team was able to incorporate it very quickly.”
The Triton technology is one of newest tools in an arsenal of protocols and procedures at the REX Women’s Center in place to protect mothers and babies before, during and after delivery. Since March, the technology has been used during about 2,400 deliveries at the REX Women’s Center.
Over the past 15 years, preventable maternal deaths and harmful postpartum health complications for mothers have increased precipitously in the U.S. due to undetected hemorrhaging, particularly in cesarean deliveries. Doctors have traditionally relied on their own subjective visual estimates of blood loss by eyeballing the surgical field. This practice is notoriously inaccurate. Attempts to weigh suction canisters and sponges are confounded by the presence of other fluids such as amniotic fluid or irrigation. Triton captures rapid scans of blood-containing sponges and canisters and uses computer vision and machine learning to estimate blood loss with significantly higher accuracy and precision.
According to a recent study of 2,781 caesarean section patients published in the American Journal of Perinatology, implementing Triton was associated with significant increases in recognition of maternal hemorrhage and significant decreases in blood product transfusions and hospital length of stay.
“At Gauss, we are leveraging artificial intelligence through machine learning and computer vision technology to give clinicians, for the first time, an objective view of blood loss,” said Siddarth Satish, CEO of Gauss Surgical. “We are delighted to be partnering with UNC REX to continue to expand the impact of this technology and are eager to continue our work together to improve not only maternal care but reshape overall operating room capabilities.”
REX Health Ventures joins nine other investors contributing to Gauss’s Series C funding, including the strategic venture arms of several other leading healthcare systems: Northwell Health, OSF Healthcare, Providence Healthcare, Orlando Health, Spectrum Health, Mount Sinai Health System, and the Memorial Hermann Health System. Other investors include SoftBank Ventures Korea, the only global early-stage venture capital arm of SoftBank Group that has invested $600 million across 230 start-up companies, and the Innovation Fund of Polaris Partners, a Boston-based venture capital firm with more than $4.3 billion under management.
About REX Health Ventures
REX Health Ventures was established by UNC REX Healthcare in 2012 as part of its commitment to innovation, and was one of the first venture funds in the country started by a community hospital. Since then, REX Health Ventures has supported about a dozen small companies, including Baebies, Emergo Therapeutics, Phononic, KitCheck and more. REX Health Ventures leverages the talent and subject matter experts across the UNC REX and UNC Health Care network by investing in and fostering companies and technologies that advance the future of health. To learn more, visit rexhealthventures.com/.
About UNC REX Healthcare
For more than 120 years, UNC REX Healthcare has provided expert care for the Wake County community and surrounding areas. With more than 7,000 co-workers, UNC REX is a private, not-for-profit health care system and is a member of UNC Health Care. UNC REX provides various health care services throughout Wake County with facilities in Apex, Cary, Garner, Holly Springs, Knightdale, Raleigh and Wakefield. To learn more, click here.
Using computer vision and machine learning algorithms, Triton estimates blood loss in real time by analyzing images of surgical sponges and canisters taken with an iPad in the operating room. Triton has demonstrated that accurate, real time estimation of blood loss leads to early recognition of hemorrhage, reduced blood transfusions and shortened length of stay for patients. Triton is FDA cleared and CE marked and has been adopted by 50 hospitals in the US. Triton received a 2018 Apple Design Award, which recognizes the best in design, innovation and technology on Apple platforms.
About Gauss Surgical
Gauss is a Silicon Valley-based technology company pioneering an over-the-air delivery model for medical technologies. The company leverages computer vision and machine learning to deliver mobile applications for the operating room, with a focus on improving patient safety, quality, and outcomes. The company’s initial product, Triton, is a real time blood loss monitor that improves care for patients and reduces costs for hospitals. For more information, go to www.gausssurgical.com.