Catalyze Innovation that Advances Health

High Frequency Nasal Cannula

Morarji PeesayDr. Morarji Peesay is a Neonatologist, Associate Professor, and a faculty member of division of neonatal prenatal medicine at the MedStar Georgetown University Hospital in Washington DC.  In partnership with MedStar Inventor Services, he created an inventive prototype called HIFI-NC (High Frequency Nasal Cannula).  

There are opportunities to improve noninvasive respiratory (NIV) support techniques in Neonatology in order to avoid intubation and mechanical ventilation and minimize lung injury in premature infants.

  • Bubble CPAP (B-CPAP) has been used extensively to provide NIV support in premature infants’ lung diseases and it is believed that the pressure oscillations generated by bubbling in B-CPAP facilitates CO2 removal. Unfortunately measurements are currently unavailable.
  • HFNC (High Flow Nasal Cannula) is also commonly used as NIV support, but is believed to be inferior to CPAP.
  • Delivering high frequency oscillations, using High Frequency Ventilators such as Jet Ventilator are proven and considered to be gentler type of ventilation to neonatal lungs.

Peesay’s prototype High Frequency Nasal Cannula (HIFI-NC) provides similar kind of oscillations but in a non-invasive manner and it augments nasal cannula flow similar to the oscillations in B-CPAP. The frequency of oscillations is dialed measurably to suit an infant’s needs.

Dr. Peesay’s mission is to innovate low cost technology that can be applied globally and will make a difference in the lives of premature infants. He wants to continually engineer intellectual capital that provides solutions for his patients’ problems.

Dr. Peesay has several inventive products, one patented and another patent pending. His other two inventions on neonatal restraints have been published in the Atlas of Procedures in Neonatology. These products are being assessed by companies for their market potential. Dr. Peesay has also published several iPhone apps, which provide innovative ways to learn materials and bedside educational tools.

He is currently working on innovative ways to deliver medication into premature infant lungs.