Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Canadians can take heart: new pump reduces stroke risk
Canadians with heart troubles may now have a better option to help their hearts. A new device, the C-pulse cuff, is similar to previous pumps which are inserted into the aorta and manually pump the blood. While these older devices have always reduced the strain on the heart, they have also increased the risk of clotting and stroke. The new C-pulse cuff, on the other hand, is attached outside the aorta, assisting the body's natural pumping process, thereby reducing strain but still limiting the risk of stroke significantly. The first Canadian to receive the C-pulse cuff was Lauza Legere, who received the device in December as part of the clinical trials at McGill University Health Centre in Montreal. Legere's response has been overwhelmingly positive, and she says that her symptoms of strain and fatigue have been greatly reduced since the surgery. The surgery was performed by Dr. Renzo Cecere, who hopes the C-pulse cuff will become a viable alternative for individuals suffering from heart problems. Similar operations have been performed around the world, with twenty patients worldwide having the device implanted. Cecere hopes to continue the trials, implanting the cuff on at least twelve more patients in the coming year.