Heart Pump to Benefit Previously 'Inoperable' Patients

Published date : 16 October 2012
Article date : 16 October 2012


NBCsandiego.com reports that one of the first patients on the West Coast (US) has benefited from the use of the Impella heart pump during a medical procedure. The device makes available a miniminally invasive technique for previously inoperable patients and is mooted as the newest version of the world’s smallest heart pump.

The US patient underwent heart bypass surgery 11 years ago, 3 heart attacks and the amputation of a leg and the procedure was conducted by cardiologists at Scripps Green in La Jolla. The Impella heart pump received FDA clearance last month when the device was approved to maintain blood flow during surgery. Apparently, the properties of the device mean that high-risk patients with blocked arteries can now undergo arterial repair without major surgery.

The article says that the Impella pump is inserted via catheter through a tiny incision in the patient's femoral artery and is then moved into position so that it will pump large quantities of blood through the body thereby taking over the pumping action of the patient’s heart. 

The device is designed to pump up to 4 litres of blood per minute through a patient's circulatory system. The catheter-delivered pump allows the heart to rest while repairs are made to damaged arteries. Previous versions of the heart pump provided about 2.5 litres of blood-flow per minute.

Source: Christine Haas, nbcsandiego.com, 15 Oct 2012 

Read the original article here



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