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A portable heart implanted like a pacemaker !

Posted Jul 18 2010 12:00pm

We have conquered  CAD with coronary  stents !  really ?  atleast , that is  what ,  many  of us  are made to  believe !

But , the fact is , modern cardiac science  with all those fancy intra coronary  devices has shifted the CAD population into  cardiac  failure population. We have extended the life of humans by at least few years and make them suffer recurrent coronary events and ultimately LV dysfunction  and cardiac failure .

We know , cardiac  failure  can not be  conquered with medicines and surgery . Cardiac  transplant  has been very successful ,  but it needs one human death to give one  life to other , and “deaths” can not be bought in stores or  donated at will !

So , the only alternative for  terminal heart failure  is total artificial   heart.(Organ farming or cloning not included ) The research is going on for the past 50 years. We are definitely on  the right track. By 2050 , my guess is  no human being  should die of heart failure .

Meanwhile , number of partial answers for  failing hearts  which are  popularly referred to  as LV assist devices are coming up.

In many cases the failing native heart supports the device  in a mutual fashion thus extending the life of the device as well .This is important because in case of total artificial heart there  is no back  up available.

These axial LV pumps just augment the overall circulation status and in the process unloads the native heart and prolongs it’s running time.

In the future one may think about  number of serial pumps in the circulatory  system rather than a single bulky artificial heart which is fraught with serious maintenance issues.

The most promising one such device is from Germany

  • A small AA battery sized tubular pump
  • Weighs 25 grams
  • Receives blood from  left atrium  pushes it into subcalvian artery
  • Can have a stroke volume of 10-15cc /beat*
  • Capacity to pump  a cardiac output of 3l/mt (This amounts to 100% augmentation in most terminal heart failure patients)
  • Can be implanted like a pacemaker

* There is little  end diastolic  residual blood in this pump .

Link to   http://www.circulite.net


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