PHOENIX - A lifesaving medical break through is set for its debut at a Valley hospital and ABC 15 got a sneak peek at how it works.
“I’ve seen it you know work miracles on patients,” said Dr. Orazio Amabile.
Heartmate 2 will soon be working miracles on cardiac patients at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center.
I joined Dr. Amabile in the operating room for a demonstration on the device.
“It’s a continuous flow device which we can implant into the left ventricle to assist the heart in pumping blood to the rest of the body,” said Dr. Amabile.
You’ve heard of this before, that’s because it was just implanted in former Vice President Dick Cheney.
“He’s a typical patient who this device was designed for,” said Dr. Amabile.
Those typical patients with advanced heart failure are often running out of options. Many have only two choices left, this or a heart transplant.
People waiting for a transplant also use the device.
“If they become sick before their donor organ arrives, this can be put into them and bridge them until they get their heart,” said Dr. Amabile.
As the doctor shows us how it works it is very apparent this is a pump. He uses water to demonstrate just how much blood it would pump through the heart.
“It’s plumbing,” said Dr. Amabile.
To keep it going the patient wears a shoulder strap device which carries a control panel as well as two batteries allowing the patients to be mobile for many hours. With this technology patients who previously couldn’t leave their home, can now take flights overseas.
This isn’t just for patients in their senior years, it’s approved for use in people as young as 16.
“They’ll have more energy, they’ll be able to do more activities of daily living, they’ll be able to walk up the block versus just walking to the front door,” said Dr. Amabile.
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