NEW YORK, N.Y. – May 23, 2023 – Fluidda, the world leader in the field of Functional Respiratory Imaging, (FRI), announced today that its technology was used to help improve the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary abnormalities in a symptomatic military officer with a history of exposure to military burn pits in Afghanistan.
Conventional approaches to diagnosing and treating respiratory problems had failed to provide symptom relief for the 58-year-old female patient.
The unique approach developed by Fluidda is non-invasive, combining quantitative computed tomography (CT) analysis with FRI to go beyond the visual assessment obtainable through more conventional radiology methods.
“We believe this case study shows that it is time for the pulmonologists to demand more from the radiologist to not settle for subjective interpretations but ask for objective quantifications of the scans,” said Jan De Backer, CEO of Fluidda.
De Backer presented a poster on the diagnosis and treatment at the American Thoracic Society conference this week in Washington, D.C.
“Through the use of Functional Respiratory Imaging, we were able to identify clinically relevant parameters that were not visible on a visual read of the same CT scan,” said Dr. Noah Lechtzin, one of the authors of the study and a pulmonologist and Director, Adult Cystic Fibrosis Program at Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins Medicine. “This led to more effective treatment and a significantly improved clinical outcome for a former U.S. Army soldier who had been exposed to burn pits.”
In the case of Linda Singh, a retired Major General of the Maryland Army National Guard, who became Dr. Lechtzin’s patient in 2022, an initial diagnosis of asthma years ago was changed to constrictive bronchiolitis based on the use of quantitative CT analysis with FRI, which improved the clinicians’ ability to pinpoint and measure lung abnormalities.
Prior to exposure Singh was in top physical condition, often participating in high intensity training workouts. Subsequently, after nine months of treatment for constrictive bronchiolitis, a reassessment revealed substantial improvement in both lung function and FRI measures.
“While I am not at the level I was before exposure, the treatment I am receiving has helped me have a better quality of life where I can at least go up the stairs without using my inhaler before doing so,” Singh said. “Between the technology and seeing Dr. Lechtzin, I now understand my lung issues and what treatment options are available instead of just being handed inhalers that mask the problem.”
Fluidda’s approach uses low-dose, high-resolution CT scans that enable visualization, segmenting, and measurement of the images in three dimensions. Computational fluid dynamics is used to quantify airflow and exposure to inhaled particles.
As a result of the innovative technology, Fluidda can assess lung and airway function, measuring airway and lung volume, ventilation, perfusion, and other functions that may be affected by respiratory diseases.
Fluidda’s assessments can also reveal important biomarkers indicating the stage of lung disease and the status of the patient’s response to treatment. Further, the detected biomarkers can aid in the development of new therapies and pathways for patient care.
Where traditional measures of lung function provide information on the health of the entire lung, Fluidda’s technology can detect function specific to a region of the lung, indicating from where the exhaled air is coming, for example.
This degree of specificity can be critical in fully understanding the pathophysiology of the patient and providing better guidance for treatment. With the capabilities shown in FRI, Fluidda considers its proprietary technology an essential addition to the toolkit of research and clinical practice in respiratory diseases.
For many military veterans, Fluidda’s innovation could not come soon enough. According to the US Department of Defense, approximately 3.5 million military personnel were exposed to the toxic gasses from burn pits during the wars in the Middle East and Afghanistan.
Congress responded by expanding the disability benefits available through the Veterans’ Administration (VA) for veterans exposed to burn pits and other battlefield pollutants. President Joe Biden signed the legislation in August 2022.
As of earlier this May, the VA has received more than 575,000 claims for benefits under the Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics Act of 2022, or PACT Act.
Fluidda is the world leader in the field of Functional Respiratory Imaging, which combines HRCT scans and Computational Fluid Dynamics technology to offer vast improvements by making clinical trials shorter, faster, and more cost effective. FRI also helps patients and healthcare providers in offering a unique entry point in personalized medicine by optimizing diagnosis, monitoring disease progression and the effects of therapy. Fluidda is both a CRO services company and a partner of healthcare professionals by offering worldwide evidence for better respiratory treatment. Fluidda’s mission is to optimize treatment pathways, reduce healthcare costs and to limit the go-to-market time of respiratory drugs, pulmonology medical devices and therapies.
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