Artificial Heart  Autumn Holsclaw


3.        An artificial heart is a mechanical device, about the size of an orange, that is connected to your heart or implanted in your chest to help or replace a failing heart. It may have several valves, a mechanism to propel blood forward, and one or more chambers.

Artificial hearts are very reliable and mechanical failure is extremely rare.

It is distinct from a cardiac pump, which is an external device used to provide the functions of both the heart and the lungs.

4.       An artificial heart is powered by either compressed air or electricity. A thin cable connects the pumping chamber to a control console that regulates the pump function. The control console can be a large box on wheels that stays beside you, moving with you when you walk around the hospital. It can also be much smaller, with attachable batteries, and worn on a belt or vest. The smaller console gives you more freedom and mobility than the large console, and may make it possible for you to leave hospital.

  5.         1976 - William S. Pierce, M.D., attaches the first Penn State air-driven heart                     pump to a post-op patient who was having trouble coming off the heart-lung                     machine. The patient survives and returns home.

  • 1985 - The Penn State Heart is first implanted in a patient.
  • 1992 - Winston the calf ushers in the era of the wireless, electric total artificial heart, living 118 days on the Penn State device.
  • 1999 - A patient on the Pierce-Donachy pump goes home with a newly approved portable power unit. The patient is able to wait at home for a transplant.
  • 2003 - November - the first results of the Arrow LionHeart European research study led by Walter Pae, Jr., M.D. are unveiled at the American Heart Association’s 76th Scientific Sessions. The study suggests that fully-implantable mechanical heart support is possible and reliable. Only three device failures were recorded in 17.3 years of support time.
  • 2008 - Penn State Hershey Heart and Vascular Institute’s ventricular assist device program becomes one of only a handful of programs nationwide to earn the Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval™ for implanting VADs as destination therapy for patients with advanced heart failure.
  • 2008 - June - Tim Richie, a 34 year old Jones town, Pa., man who received a heart pump six months earlier, leaves the Penn State Hershey Medical Center with a recuperated heart and no pump. It is rare that a failing heart recovers on a pump; typically patients remain on the pump permanently or until a donor heart is found.

6.      An artificial heart or LVAD is made out of metal, plastic, ceramic, and animal parts. A titanium-aluminum-vanadium alloy is used for the pump and other metal parts because it is bio-compatible and has suitable structural properties. The titanium parts are cast at a specialized titanium processor. Except for blood-contacting surfaces, the titanium is machined to a specific finish. Blood-contacting surfaces receive a special coating of titanium micro-spheres that bond permanently to the surface. With this coating, blood cells adhere to the surface, creating a living lining.

After assembly is completed, each device is tested using special equipment that simulates pressures in the body. All electronic components are tested with electronic test equipment to ensure the proper function of all circuitry.

The base amount is $98,747

7.   The right atrium collects blood and the right ventricle then pumps it to the lungs where it is oxygenated. The blood is then picked up by the left atrium and distributed around the body and brain by the left ventricle. Each side of the heart has a pair of valves – one pair per lung – controlling the flow of blood.

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