An electrolarynx for use in IC-units

The idea had been lingering for years. When Armand Girbes decided to finally pursue it, he almost instantly got a publication in the New England Journal of Medicine. The electrolarynx, which is known for its use after laryngectomy, produces vibrations that allow the intubated user to speak. As professor of intensive care medicine, Girbes understands the increasing relevance of this: “Where in earlier days we would sedate most IC patients, we now prefer to keep them awake. For intubated patients this often leads to stress since they cannot speak and thus have limited capabilities to express themselves.”

Over the last few years Girbes and coworkers have performed more research showing that the electrolarynx really improves this. He now wants to make the voice generator part of the standard equipment surrounding an IC-unit. This does however require some adjustments, in particular making it more user-friendly for IC-nurses. IXA teamed him up with the Dutch medical technology firm Relitech and now a prototype is being developed and the market explored. Girbes appreciates these efforts: “Not only do I lack experience in this field, I simply do not have the time needed to make this innovation a success. It’s good to have experienced people assisting me here.”