Advertisements
Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘future of cardiology’

Artificial pacemaker is one of the major discoveries in cardiology that has given new lease of life to patients suffering from serious bradycardia and heart blocks . Now, the technology has grown beyond pacing , for delivering shock ,defibrillate , resynchronise failing heart etc. For accomplishing  all these tasks we need electrical power . . . non stop on board !

Though , the energy required for sustaining an electric pacemaker is miniscule (About 40 micro watts) still, the lithium ion battery can last only around  10 years with the available technology.Various alternate sources for power* are being  explored. One great innovation is on the horizon .A new “scientific spark”  came from a totally unexpected  quarter.

 If Automatic Swiss watch can run without a battery  life long ?  Why not a cardiac  pacemaker  ?

 How about harvesting mechanical energy from the heart itself  ? (The ultimate biological bundle of energy ! ) .

The concept was  originally suggested by University of Berne Switzerland , researchers from Stanford has successfully used the cardiac  muscle activity as a dynamo to generate and store minute amount of electricity that can sustain heartbeats in an electro  mechanical coil loop model.

heart-powered-pacemaker

A person’s heartbeat  moves a magnet and generate electricity for a pacemaker

enerharvpromo-1

Trials done on pig’s heart are promising .(Reference 1)

Final message 

The idea may look dramatic , but it works.Hope  it becomes reality in our patients in near future.

Further reading

* Creating gene modified  biological pacemaker cell is .

Sharing this  article from  Via: New Scientist

By Lisa Zyga
Science Blogger
InventorSpot.com

  At first glance, this idea seems somewhat impossible, like using the movement of an engine’s pistons to power a car. However, researchers David Tran and his colleagues from Stanford University explain in a recent patent that the idea is very plausible. For one thing, a heart-powered pacemaker can generate and store more electricity than required to operate, and use the stored energy when needed. Also, a battery could be included in the pacemaker, and power from the heart would extend the life of the battery.

Overall, the researchers hope that the invention could at least double the lifetime of today’s pacemakers. Currently, the batteries in pacemakers can last up to ten years, although they typically last only four to five years. (Originally, batteries lasted for as little as a year.)

The invention also has the potential to reduce the size of the pacemaker by one-half or more. For example, a typical commercial pacemaker with a volume of 16 milliliters may be reduced in overall size to as small as 1-8 milliliters.

An embedded generator could continuously produce power in several ways, such as through electromagnetic induction or the piezoelectric effect (electric energy generated via mechanical stress).

In the Stanford team’s design, the generator is implanted near the heart wall, such as attached to the myocardium or pericardium, which would subject the generator to regular pulsating movements produced by the beating heart.

The generator itself consists of a magnet, a conductor (both micro- or even nano-sized), and electrical leads hooked up to the medical device. Contraction of the heart muscle causes relative motion between the magnet and the conductor (such as a coil of wire). This relative motion between the magnetic and coil induces an electric current in the wire, which is transmitted through the leads to the implanted pacemaker.

Movements produced by the beating heart would have a frequency of between about 0.5 Hz and 2 Hz, which could generate between 40 microwatts and 200 microwatts of power. The pacemaker would only require about 40 microwatts, so the excess power could be stored and used for later use, such as when the heart stops beating.

Besides using the movement generated by the muscular contractions of the heart, other versions of the pacemaker could generate power from heat differentials, physiological pressures, and flows and movements, such as blood flow. And in addition to pacemakers, the researchers suggest that similar systems could be used to power defibrillators, ventricular assist devices, muscle , neurological stimulators, cochlear implants, monitoring devices, and drug pumps.

Reference

http://powerelectronics.com/energy-harvesting/energy-harvesting-poised-eliminate-pacemaker-battery

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Cardiac arrhythmias  are tackled by drugs, devices, electricity etc. How about using the light energy ?

It would be sort of revolution if we could tame dangerous cardiac arrhythmias  by optical energy.Exciting new developments are happening at Jhon Hopkins.The emerging field is optogenetics.Preliminary mouse  and human MRI models suggest  red light has a unique property to interrupt electrical  signals in cardiac tissues.(Tissue level induction of light sensitive protein?).It has been shown to revert ventricular arrhytmias.

Reference

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-09/uob-tol090816.php

A preview

Curious thoughts and a corollary in Hindu mythology

optical-defibrillation

There are anecdotal reports in vedic Indian literature  where super powered sky Gods  equipped with the power of light (Lightening/IR rays ? ) can bring life to dead man on earth  . . . Is it the same  optical defibrillation we are talking about now ?

Read Full Post »

Medical research   often ventures into a directionless and meaningless  exercise with or without intention .The reason is simple , unlike  other fields,  scientists enjoy  the ultimate freedom of expression.

How to find genuine treasures from this chaos ?

We need people like Valentine Fuster ,

valentine fuster global cardiology what is the future

Here is link to the article in   circulation 2011  which I consider a must read for all cardiologists !

global  cardiovascular health valentine fuster circulation 2011

Read Full Post »