Friday, December 19, 2008

A New Generation of Artificial Heart Will Avail by 2011!

Shortage of transplant donors for heart is a worldwide phenomenon. It is estimated to be a worldwide shortage of 20,000 heart donors every year. As such, several research teams from United States, Japan, South Korea, and Europe are expediting their pace for the development of a total artificial organ, which can permanently replace the human heart.

After spending 15 years to develop a total artificial organ, a European research team revealed that a fully implantable artificial heart has been developed and they are now moving from pure research to clinical application. Such prosthetic heart is ready to be manufactured and should be ready for human use by 2011.

The artificial organ has a shape like a real heart and has the same blood flow rhythm. The prototype uses the same technology as prosthetic heart valves that have already been used around the world, and is developed by Mr Carpentier, a leading heart transplant specialist.

The existing artificial hearts have the problem of rejection by the patient’s immune system or blood clotting. In order to solve such problem, the new artificial organ is made from chemically treated animal tissues.

It is meant for heart disease patients who have a massive heart attack or with late-stage heart failure, and for those who cannot be treated by drug therapy, ventricular assistance, have heart transplant failed, or heart transplant is not available.

So far, the artificial heart has been tested using digital simulation and on animals. The trials have indicated no complications.

The existing artificial heart is a thumb-sized device implanted in the patient’s chest that sucks blood from the heart and pumps it into the aorta. The device has to be recharged every 4 hours using an external battery. In United States and Europe, heart surgeons have implanted such ventricular assistance devices (VAD) in 220 patients since 2000.

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