Posted on Jul 23, 2019
EU Today has had the privilege of meeting with one of the world’s leading authorities in what is known as FemTech - woman’s health issues - Dr. Elan Ziv, CEO of ConTIPI Medical Ltd, Israel.
Dr. Ziv, a graduate of the Sackler School of Medicine, Tel Aviv, and a former medical officer in the Israeli Armed Forces for no less than 5 years, is one his country’s leading gynaecologists. He is also acknowledged as a leading innovator in the field of Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP), a condition that affects many women, as Dr. Ziv told EU Today "Of the estimated 135 million women suffering from POP worldwide, 28 percent live in Europe." Globally, as many as 50% of women are believed to be suffering from one or more of the symptoms of POP, albeit to differing degrees.
POP can occur when the muscles and tissues supporting the pelvic organs (the uterus, bladder, or rectum) become weak or loose, which can cause one or more of the pelvic organs to drop or press into or out of the vagina. This process can happen as a result of childbirth, strenuous physical exertion, or simply as a result of ageing. It is is not a life threatening condition, as Dr. Ziv points out, but symptoms can include vaginal or rectal incontinence, which are not only embarrassing, but which also deter some sufferers from seeking medical help and proper diagnosis.
Pelvic organ prolapse happens when the muscles and tissues supporting the pelvic organs (the uterus, bladder, or rectum) become weak or loose. This allows one or more of the pelvic organs to drop or press into or out of the vagina. Many women are embarrassed to talk to their doctor about their symptoms or think that their symptoms are normal. But pelvic organ prolapse is treatable.
Means of treating POP traditionally rely on somewhat invasive non-surgical intervention involving physical insertion, by a doctor, of a device that is intended to support the weakened muscles. This is a reportedly unpleasant process that can seriously hinder sexual activity, and which works on a 3 month cycle.
Dr. Ziv has pioneered an alternative means of mitigating POP which not only removes the need for doctoral intervention, but which also places the procedure firmly in the hands of the patient, which facilitates full sexual activity, and allows the patient to stop or start treatment at her own discretion. Any woman familiar with the use of a Tampon applicator will find the process simple: “It will take about 25 seconds to instruct a lady on how to use this”, said Dr. Ziv.
The first product designed by Dr. Ziv was to treat stress urinary incontinence: this ground-breaking product was sold in 2013 to Kimberly Clark Worldwide and is now available for sale off the shelf in North America.
His second innovation, for the treatment of pelvic organ prolapse, has now received a European sales permit (CE) and has also received FDA clearance in the United States: this week he has been presenting the technology in the European Parliament in Brussels.
The most important aspect of this innovation is that it takes treatment away from medical professionals - although Dr. Ziv is adamant that his product should initially be subject to prescription - and places this important aspect of feminine health care in the hands of the individual. Instead of waiting for an appointment with a doctor, and undergoing an invasive process every 3 months or so, the user can insert, remove, or replace the device every day if she so wishes.
EU Today broached the all important matter of cost: Dr. Ziv told us that the annual cost, based on average usage, would be a little over €400 per annum, but that as a prescribed medication it would be covered by medical insurance, or in the case of the UK by the NHS.
For many years we have been working to promote pelvic floor solutions and products that will help every woman conduct a normal life and fully control her medical condition. This is an innovative groundbreaking product, enabling women to control their medical problem and we assume that the product will soon be available to millions of women worldwide who would be interested in treatment.
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