SyringeSyringes have been a prime vehicle for delivering drugs and drawing blood since as early as 1850s, when French physician Charles Pravaz and Scottish physician Alexander Wood independently developed a medical hypodermic syringe with a needle that was small enough to pierce the skin, according to an article on the website of the Science Museum in London.
As with the stethoscope, the hypodermic syringe enabled physicians to draw blood from patients, as well as inject drugs into them, without causing permanent injury. Initially used to deliver morphine to kill pain, they’ve been the delivery vehicle of countless life-saving substances — including insulin after its role in diabetes was discovered in the 1920s.
More than 100 years later, Spanish inventor Manuel Jalón Corominas created the auto-disposable needle-syringe, which was pivotal to reducing the spread of AIDS and other transmitted diseases because the needle became detachable from the syringe after use.
Hypodermic syringes are arguably a good example of how an already available technology can become disruptive thanks to new innovations. Syringes, after all, has been around since the time of the Roman Empire, according to a Wikipedia article about syringes.