VISTA, Calif. — MAY 13, 2020 — Sommetrics, Inc. a company providing products and services to improve sleep quality, and its partially owned affiliate, aerFree, LLC, which is dedicated to improving acute airway management, today announced the donation of their aerFree® product to leading academic centers to assist in the management of COVID-19 respiratory impairment. aerFree® is a FDA cleared, single use product intended to maintain the patency of the upper airway during medical procedures utilizing non-propofol sedatives. In parallel, an application was made to the FDA for Emergency Use Authorization to employ aerFree® as an aid to intubation in patients with COVID-19. aerFree® may play an important role in this setting given its ease of use and its ability to expand the caliber of the upper airway, thereby facilitating first pass placement of endotracheal tubes and diminishing the infectious risk to healthcare personnel from prolonged, difficult intubations. Kingman Strohl MD, a pulmonologist and sleep specialist at Case Western Reserve University commented, “This is a safe tool for critical care and anesthesia specialists to deploy in order to pull open the upper airway from the outside for a better view, reduce manipulations inside the airway, and improve procedure efficiency.”
Sommetrics also filed an Emergency Use Authorization request to use a modified aerSleep® product to support patients with COVID-19 related respiratory impairment who are not candidates for mechanical ventilation. aerSleep®, which is intended to treat obstructive sleep apnea using an integrated vacuum source, has been modified to utilize readily available sources of suction in the acute care setting. The modified aerSleep® product may be suitable for use over the course of days to weeks to reduce airway collapse in those with COVID-19 who have sleep apnea and/or are receiving sedative drugs. By expanding the upper airway, the modified aerSleep® product may reduce the work of breathing which is an important mechanical component of respiratory compromise in this clinical setting. Since the modified aerSleep® product is external to the airway, its use does not pose a risk of creating infectious aerosols, like some types of non-invasive ventilation such as Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP).
Both aerFree® and the modified aerSleep® product employ the Sommetrics aer+™ technology, which involves the application of external negative pressure over the upper airway to comfortably and non-invasively hold the airway open. Aer+™ is the basis of Sommetrics Inc and aerFree LLC products and numerous issued and filed patents. It has been shown to safely reduce airway collapse in those with all degrees of sleep apnea severity, and in patients developing apnea as the result of receiving sedative drugs in the acute care setting.
“We are grateful to be able to make what are believed to be significant contributions to the management of respiratory complications of COVID-19. We look forward to working with the medical community to facilitate adoption of our products into the best treatment practices for COVID-19 and airway collapse in a number of clinical settings,” remarked Dr. Richard Rose, President, CEO and Chief Medical Officer of Sommetrics.
About Sommetrics, Inc.
Sommetrics is a privately funded company located in Vista, California. It is focused on improving sleep quality by providing products and services that deal with disorders of the upper airway such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and snoring. For more information, visit www.sommetrics.com. aerFree® and aerSleep® are registered trademarks of Sommetrics; aer+ is a trademark of Sommetrics.
About aerFree, LLC
aerFree LLC is medical device company based in Vista, CA. The company focuses on airway management solutions in the acute care arena. Its aerFree AMS product is a FDA cleared, single use device aimed at improving acute airway management in those at risk for airway compromise due to administration of non-propofol sedative medications. For more details, please visit aerfree.com.