“Vecherniaya Moskva”: Scientists help the heart beat. A Zelenograd device saves lives

Recently, a surgery on a patient with severe heart failure was successfully performed in the Omsk region clinical hospital.

A ventricular assist device was installed to the patient. It was developed by the designers and engineers from the Zelenоgrad Innovation and Technology Centre (ZITC).

So far, only four patients have undergone surgeries according to this method, but more surgeries are still ahead. The device is not only compact and convenient for the doctors and the patients, but also costs two times less than foreign analogues, and the quality is just as good.

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According to Ilya Gavrilov, the head of the Medical Devices Department in ZITC, the device is a collective work of National Research University of Electronic Technology “MIET”, ZITC, and Federal State Budgetary Institution “Academician V.I.Shumakov Federal Research Center of Transplantology and Artificial Organs”. Basically, the device functions as the heart’s left ventricular, that is, it ensures the normal blood flow.

A significant advantage of the device, Gavrilov explains, is that besides the part that is implanted into the heart, it has a very convenient exterior part – the accumulator and the control device are located in a small bag. This allows the patient with a severe case of heart failure to lead a normal life while waiting for a donor heart for the transplantation.

“Recently there was a news story about a girl whose heart almost stopped beating. After the installation of our device, not only could she walk, but was even able to ride a bike”, Gavrilov proudly adds.

Undoubtedly, this technology is very important for our medicine. A negligibly small number of surgeries are performed in Russia - about a hundred surgeries a year. For comparison, the same number is tens of thousands in Europe. The Zelenograd device is going to help prolong the lives of the people who have already given up their hopes for a donor.

Here’s a quote from Valery Tsekhanovich, the head of the Cardiac Surgery ward of the Omsk region clinical hospital.

“The Zelenograd device is a modern, compact system designed to support the blood flow, which enables the patient to live and to improve the condition of the organism, that is, to lead a normal life, to endure exercises. Of course, we aren’t talking about playing football or running, but a person can still be active within reasonable limits. The surgery in our hospital went well; the patient is getting ready to be discharged. Similar surgeries were performed before in Academician E.N.Meshalkin Novosibirsk Research Institute of Circulation Pathology. The results are positive; the device is of high quality. Let me remind you that left ventricular hypertrophy is a common condition, even in young people, and that sudden death of the patient is very characteristic of this condition. Statistically, the mortality rate with such a condition is 4 percent”.