A new intraventricular axial flow blood pump has been designed and developed as a totally implantable left ventricular assist device (LVAD). This pump consists of an impeller combined with a guide-vane, a tube housing, and a DC motor. The pump is introduced into the LV cavity through the LV apex, and the outlet cannula is passed antegrade across the aortic valve. Blood is withdrawn from the LV through the inlet ports at the pump base, and discharged to the ascending aorta. Our newly developed axial flow pump system has the following advantages: 1) it is a simple and compact system, 2) minimal blood stasis both in the device and the LV cavity, 3) minimal blood contacting surface of the pump, 4) easy accessibility with a less invasive surgical procedure, and 5) low cost. A pump flow > 5 L/min was obtained against 100 mmHg differential pressure in the mock circulatory system. The pump could produce a passive pulsatile flow effect with a beating heart more efficiently than other non-pulsatile pumps because of minimal pressure drop and inertia along the bypass tract. Anatomic fit studies using dissected hearts of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) cadavers showed that this pump could smoothly pass through the aortic valve without any interference with mitral valve function. Recently, a dynamic pressure groove bearing and a miniature lip seal have been developed. The dynamic pressure groove bearing has a simple structure and acts as a pressure resistant sealing mechanism. As the rotor and stator are made of ceramic material and rotate without making contact, their abrasion resistance is very high, making stabilized high speed rotation over a long time possible, while keeping noise and heat generation within very low levels. The miniature silicon rubber lip seal showed no leakage after a durability test of more than 1,700 hours.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering