A unique cardiac prothesis device is currently undergoing clinical trials. Called the Hemopump, this device is a radical new design of a temporary left ventricular assist blood pump. It uses a miniature (7 mm diameter) axial flow pump placed transvalvular across the aortic valve which pumps blood from the left ventricle to the aorta. Mechanical power from an external motor is transmitted percuta-neously to the pump by a flexible cable contained within a catheter-like sheath. This arrangement allows the pump to be placed through a femoral artery cutdown without requiring major surgery. Development of the Hemopump concept presented significant challenges in pump hydraulic design, bearing, and seal design, as well as materials selection and miniature parts fabrication. Clinical trial results thus far indicate these challenges have been well met and that the Hemopump has the potential to become a widely used safe and effective clinical device.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering