From north of the (US) border comes news that Gerard Langevin, a Montréalean from the Nation of Québec, has become the “first living Canadian without a heart beat.” He’s the proud new owner (wonder if he actually owns the hardware?) of a Toratec HeartMate II, which is a continuous-flow LVAD…
The medical breakthrough was announced by Dr. Renzo Cecere and Dr. Nadia Giannetti at a news conference at McGill University Health Centre on Wednesday.
“A continuous flow pump does not produce any pulsation,” Cecere told CTV News.
“In fact there is only one moving part that is levitated within a magnetic field and therefore there is no friction within that pump, and in the absence of friction there is no wear and tear on the components and if there is no wear and tear we expect this pump will last for a very long time.”
Though the device is still in the trial stages and the research is only being done on “end stage” heart patients, the doctors said they believe the technology will change the way heart patients are treated, providing an alternative to heart transplant surgery.
As the head of Medgadget’s Engineering Technical Corrections Department, this author must correct Cecere to point out that there is indeed friction within the pump, between the impeller and the blood itself. Best wishes to Mr. Langevin, that he will indeed be able to test the longevity of the device.
More from CTV.ca (eh?) and Thoratec‘s product page.