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Innovative Guard Helps Prevent Needlestick Injuries

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 24 Apr 2018
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Image: The MasterGuard Plus with FingerShield anchor (Photo courtesy of NxStage Medical).
Image: The MasterGuard Plus with FingerShield anchor (Photo courtesy of NxStage Medical).
Intuitive ergonomic design and patented safety features increase staff security following retraction of arteriovenous fistula (AVF) dialysis needles.

The NxStage Medical (Lawrence, MA, USA) MasterGuard Plus needles are designed with a patented FingerShield anchor that provides a barrier between the pressure-holding fingers and the sharp tip of the needle. During needle retraction, flexible wings with interlocking grips are drawn backwards into the jaw; the small jaw and rigid base of the MasterGuard plus align the needle into the center of the guard. Once the needle is fully retracted, an audible click is heard, signifying that the needle is locked in a steep rear angle that prevents accessibility.

The MasterGuard plus needles themselves also offer several new features that allow for easier insertion, including ultra-thin walls; precisely ground bevels and a siliconized tip for smooth cannulation; a short hub designed to minimize leverage; and a rotatable bevel indicator that reduces the risk of potential tissue damage associated with unwarranted rotation of fixed wing needles.

“Early customer feedback has been very positive, validating many of the benefits we expected,” said Joseph Turk, president of NxStage Medical. "We are very excited to bring these enhanced features to dialysis staff and patients, while maintaining the ease of use that they have come to expect from Medisystems products.”

“I’ve been working in hemodialysis for 40 years, and I’ve seen every hemodialysis needle safety device that’s come along,” said Joe Atkins, RN, MBA, of Sidney (OH, USA). “I can safely say that, for all the right reasons, including safety and ease of cannulation, MasterGuard Plus is my first and only choice. I wouldn’t use anything else.”

An AVF is the most recommended access for kidney disease patients undergoing dialysis, created by connecting a patient's vein and artery to form a long-lasting site through which blood can be removed and returned. After the creation of an AVF, blood flow increases immediately, reaching 700–1,000 mL/min within one month. Both the artery and the vein dilate and elongate in response to the greater blood flow and shear stress, but the vein dilates more; when large enough to allow cannulation, the AVF is defined as mature.

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