Who needs a pulse?

xander | 07:30 AM
Scientists have developed a new heart pump to avoid many of the pitfalls of current models. One side-effect: with the new pump, you don't have a pulse.
Most LVADs [left ventricular assist devices] attempt to mimic the way the heart works, but their complicated design makes them prone to failure, and they have a tendency to make blood pool and clot, leading to strokes. That means LVADs are usually only used as a last resort for patients waiting for heart transplants.

What makes the VentrAssist different is that it only has one moving part, a spinning impeller that drives a continuous stream of blood. That means the pulse is replaced by a gentle whirling noise that patients describe as similar to the sound of a washing machine. More importantly, the device prevents blood from stagnating, reducing the risk of clotting.

Also, "There is no predicted lifespan for VentrAssist because there are no wearing parts," says co-inventor of the device and company founder John Woodard. "It could be a hundred years, we don't know."

[ Link via New Scientist ]


cool!...but everything has a lifespan

Posted by: jess at May 1, 2006 03:48 PM

Agreed, they just don't have a prediction on what the VentrAssist lifespan will be, since they haven't been able to wear one out to failure yet.

Posted by: xander at May 1, 2006 04:07 PM

cool!...but everything has a lifespan

Posted by: インプラント at September 17, 2007 03:03 AM
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