Published On: Mon, Aug 25th, 2014

Saving Lives on the Battlefield: New Israeli Medical Technology


A simple, basic medical device aimed at saving lives on the battlefield was developed and manufactured by a medical start-up company based in Ra’anana, Israel.

The project is based on the ideas of Morris Topaz, a plastic surgeon and the director of the Hillel Jaffe Medical Center Plastic Surgery Unit.

TopClosure is a device aimed at temporary, quick closure of traumatic injuries, on the battlefield or during mass casualty events, by medical personnel such as paramedics or even the injured themselves, before the arrival of available senior medical personnel and the evacuation of the injured soldier to the nearest hospital.

The new product is to be added to first aid kits used by emergency medical forces, such as ambulances, paramedics and military medics. It’s aimed at solving the closure problem of large, traumatic wounds (such as lost limbs), helping to prevent bleeding or infections that can make them difficult to treat.

The TopClosure kit is very simple to operate, containing two small, 6 by 2.5 centimeter plastic bottles with an adhesive surface on their bottom side. That surface adheres to the skin on both sides of the wound. The surfaces contain a serrated slit through which a plastic ribbon – similar to plastic restraints – is then passed. The skin on both sides of the wound is stretched closed until it covers the entire wound.

In cases where the size of the injury is relatively large (such as lost limbs) several kits may be used along the same injury, achieving better closure while applying uniform pressure on the skin surrounding the injury.

The treatment process can be complimented by other accessories, such as procoagulants or personal bandages, for better treatment of casualties in long range or delayed evacuation scenarios, where evacuation – by ground vehicle, plane or helicopter – requires preparation.

The plastic bases can be stapled to the body next to the injury using medical skin staples. In this manner the device can act as an emergency suture, which is sometimes unavailable during combat or mass casualty events.

The TopClosure kit, manufactured by Israeli company IVT Medical, saw its first field use during Operation Protective Edge. The device, according to various iHLS sources, saved lives, reduced the need for surgery and reduced recovery times. Outside Israel the device was used by the product development team, led by Dr. Morris Topaz, in regions where access to medical facilities or hospitals is difficult, and the TopClosure kit proved very helpful.

The product was approved by the U.S. FDA and the European CE, in addition to Israeli authorities. It’s relatively low cost – around $60 – depending on the package configuration and the target market.

“During mass casualty events, when skilled and well equipped medical personnel are scarce, there’s a very urgent need for quick emergency treatment. I learned this as a young doctor attached to a paratrooper unit during the Lebanon War, and while treating many terror victims who suffered complex injuries at the Hillel Jaffe medical center.”

“In a battlefield, or during a mass casualty event, and especially after explosions, there’s a spike in the number of casualties – and not enough people capable of giving medical treatment, especially surgeons. I’ve no doubt that the TopClosure kit, carried by every soldier, doctor and paramedic, will save lives.” This according to Dr. Morris Topaz in an exclusive interview given to iHLS.


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