BBC News reports:
Doctors at Hammersmith Hospital in London carried out the procedure using the world’s smallest heart support system – a device just 4mm wide.
It was inserted into an artery in the groin and passed up into the heart.
The pump, removed a day later, assisted the patient’s heart in the crucial few hours after coronary artery bypass surgery.
The device offers hope for patients previously considered too ill to be operated on, by providing temporary support for the heart muscle during the critical period after a heart attack or surgery.
And here is the “anatomy”:
Impella Recover LP 2.5 has been developed by Impella CardioSystems AG of Germany. This gadget is the coolest thing that I have seen in the longest time! Wow!
Update (December 16, 2004): We have received the following email from the marketing department at Impella CardioSystems:
Thank you for your recent website inquiry and interest in our RECOVER System. We are currently in a 20 patient/6 center US Feasibility Trial with the RECOVER LP 5.0 System for Cardiogenic shock. We have enrolled 8 patients. We are also working on an High-Risk PCI support IDE protocol for the smaller catheter- the RECOVER LP 2.5 system. We hope to submit this protocol by the end of the year and hope to have approval to start enrolling patient in Q1 2005…