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ASAIO J. 2007 May-Jun;53(3):310-5.

Design features, developmental status, and experimental results with the Heartmate III centrifugal left ventricular assist system with a magnetically levitated rotor.

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Thoratec Corporation, Pleasanton, California 94588, USA.


A long-term left ventricular assist system for permanent use in advanced heart failure is being developed on the basis of a compact centrifugal pump with a magnetically levitated rotor and single-fault-tolerant electronics. Key features include its "bearingless" (magnetic levitation) design, textured surfaces similar to the HeartMate XVE left ventricular assist device (LVAD) to reduce anticoagulation requirements and thromboembolism, a sensorless flow estimator, and an induced pulse mode for achieving an increased level of pulsatility with continuous flow assistance. In vitro design verification testing is underway. Preclinical testing has been performed in calves demonstrating good in vivo performance at an average flow rate of 6 L/min (maximum: >11 L/min) and normal end-organ function and host response. Induced pulse mode demonstrated the ability to produce a physiological pulse pressure in vivo. Thirteen LVADs have achieved between 16 to 40 months of long-term in vitro reliability testing and will be continued until failure. Both percutaneous and fully implanted systems are in development, with a modular connection for upgrading without replacing the LVAD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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