Getting an Epidural Is About to Get a Whole Lot Easier

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If you are planning on giving birth in the near future and you want to use pain medication, you’re in luck! Getting an epidural is about to become a whole lot easier thanks to a new invention that gives anesthesiologists the ability to determine the correct needle insertion point with almost no margin of error. The Food and Drug Administration just approved the new system, which is excellent news.

According to, the CompuFlo Epidural Computer Controlled Anesthesia System gives visual and audible in-tissue feedback to anesthesiologists while they are determining the optimal needle insertion point. The inventor of the device, Dr. Mark Hochman, told that the CompuFlo gives anesthesiologists “better aim” when determining the correct location for an epidural thanks to the criteria he devised that allows physicians to find the correct location “with more objective certainty.” The current epidural procedures are subjective and hard to master, so this system will standardize epidurals for everyone.

That means no more freak-out during labor that while they’re trying to insert the catheter and you’re trying not to scream too loudly because you’re sitting on your butt and they’re telling you to sit still during your contractions.

Clinical studies found that the CompuFlow found the optimal epidural space on the first attempt 99% of the time.

That’s amazing! We all know someone who had to be stuck multiple times during an epidural.

This new device will not only drastically reduce the odds of that happening, but will also help prevent the risks that accompany multiple insertions. The last thing any new mom wants or needs is to deal with an infection or a post-dural headache!

Hochman, who also invented a computer-assisted anesthesia system for dental procedures, anticipates that hospitals could start rolling out the CompuFlow over the next six months. If you think you might request an epidural during delivery, it’s definitely something to ask your obstetrician about!

(Image: iStock / chameleonseye)