Office of Technology Transfer – University of Michigan

Improving Seal During Face-Mask Ventilation

Technology #5560

Questions about this technology? Ask a Technology Manager

Download Printable PDF

Joel L. Kileny
Managed By
Janani Ramaswamy
Licensing Specialist, Medical Deviceses 734-763-9081
Patent Protection
US Patent Pending
US Patent Pending

Facemasks in general anesthesia and mask ventilation

Over the past 10 years there has been an increase in medical procedures requiring general anesthesia. This increase has created an obvious gap between the devices used and the diversity of the patient population. Close to 10% of all applications of general anesthesia report difficulty in securing proper seals for mask ventilation. This difficulty stems from the increasingly varied facial characteristics of the patient population. Features such as facial hair, obesity, and bone structure commonly impair the effectiveness of current facial mask ventilation devices. The current solution to improper mask fitting requires anesthesiologists to focus on applying increased pressure to the outside of the mask, which causes fatigue and distracts from the primary objective of maintaining an open airway. There is a need for an improved facial mask that provides proper sealing regardless of facial structure and is ergonomically designed for continued use by an anesthesiologist.

A New Mask to Keep the Seal during General Anesthesia

A new face-mask for use in ventilation has been designed for both the user and provider. The mask has been designed to create an ergonomic fit for the provider’s hand, thus allowing for reduction in fatigue and movement of mask. By increasing the usability of the mask, the user will have improved seals along the mask and face improving the effectiveness of treatment. A new mask has been created to account for a diverse population of patients requiring general anesthesia.


  • Face-mask ventilation for general anesthesia


  • Improved ergonomics reduces fatigue for provider
  • Design robustness increases effectiveness of treatment