Portable Medical Suction and Aspirator Devices: Are the Design and Performance Standards Relevant?




Peri, Saketh R.
Akhter, Forhad
De Lorenzo, Robert A.
Hood, R. Lyle

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



Airway clearance refers to the clearing of any airway blockage caused due to foreign objects such as mud, gravel, and biomaterials such as blood, vomit, or teeth fragments using the technology of choice, portable suction devices. Currently available devices are either too heavy and bulky to be carried, or insufficiently powered to be useful despite being in accordance with the ISO 10079-1 standards. When applied to portable suction, the design and testing standards lack clinical relevancy, which is evidenced by how available portable suction devices are sparingly used in pre-hospital situations. Lack of clinical relevancy despite being in accordance with design/manufacturing standards arise due to little if any collaboration between those developing clinical standards and the bodies that maintain design and manufacturing standards. An updated set of standards is required that accurately reflects evidence-based requirements and specifications, which should promote valid, rational, and relevant engineering designs and manufacturing standards in consideration of the unique scenarios facing prehospital casualty care. This paper aims to critically review the existing standards for portable suction devices and propose modifications based on the evidence and requirements, especially for civilian prehospital and combat casualty care situations.



portable suction device, ISO 10079-1, portable suction device standards, airway clearance, standard developing organizations (SDO), aspirators, emergency medics


Sensors 22 (7): 2515 (2022)


Biomedical Engineering and Chemical Engineering
Mechanical Engineering