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World's First Fully Functional Artificial Heart Costs $192,000

November 4th, 2008 Leave a comment Go to comments

DailyTech – World’s First Fully Functional Artificial Heart Costs $192,000

French invention could help to extend the natural human lifespan

French scientists have invented a working prototype of a fully artificial heart.  The heart is based on bleeding edge technology found in satellites and aircraft.  The heart beats nearly like its organic counterpart and operates using similar feedback as well.  It uses electric sensors to monitor and control heart rate and blood flow.

Carmat, the company who developed the device, with funding from the European space and defense group EADS, unveiled the heart at a Paris press conference this week.  The device could save millions — and its all thanks to modern aerospace technology, according to Carmat’s top executives.  Carmat’s chief operating officer Patrick Coulombier states, “It’s the same principle in the airplane as in the body.”

In the past there have been artificial hearts, like the much hyped Jarvik heart, however they were only a temporary fix while awaiting transplant.  The key problem was that they could not adjust their pumping like a biological heart, and could only be adjusted externally.  This limited their usefulness.

The new heart tries its best to model the real thing, and come awfully close.  Tiny pressure and altitude sensors, developed for use in airplanes, feed information about blood flow to the heart.  The device responds almost immediately, with lightening fast decisions to increase or decrease blood flow.

Past hearts have also only had one pump, but the new heart features two, just like the real heart. It pumps blood to the lungs and then pumps the returning blood to the rest of the body, just like in the real heart.  The new heart is made largely of a combination of polymer and pig tissue, a similar design to modern heart valves, implanted in many people.

The device has been successfully tested on large mammals, and is awaiting permission to begin clinical human trials.  Its makers are very confident that the device will be safe, long-lived, and will open undreamt of possibilities for people with heart disease.  Initially it will be offered to those suffering from a massive heart attack or who had heart failure.  However eventually it could be implanted in people with milder heart problems.

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  1. December 16th, 2010 at 10:24 | #1

    heart attack is very common these days, it is because of a high fat diet and lack of exercise :’,

  2. October 23rd, 2010 at 19:11 | #2

    heart attack is the number 1 killer of middle-aged and old-aged people these days`*:

  3. September 8th, 2010 at 21:52 | #3

    heart attack can be prevented by taking CoQ10 and also Fish Oils-‘`

  4. June 11th, 2010 at 08:10 | #4

    Heart attack could be prevented with exercise, diet and some food supplements like CoQ10.;-`

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