Getting a shot from a doctor may become less painful in the very near future. A new device from MIT researchers can deliver a high-pressure jet of medicine through the skin, without the use of a hypodermic needle.
The jet-injector uses a Lorentz-force actuator capable of injecting high pressure and controlled doses, out of a nozzle, about the diameter of a mosquito’s proboscis, at almost the speed of sound in air.
“If I’m breaching a baby’s skin to deliver vaccine, I won’t need as much pressure as I would need to breach my skin,” says Catherine Hogan, a scientist in MIT’s Department of Mechanical Engineering. “We can tailor the pressure profile to be able to do that, and that’s the beauty of this device.”
“If you are afraid of needles and have to frequently self-inject, compliance can be an issue. We think this kind of technology … gets around some of the phobias that people may have about needles,” says Hogan.