A device that “hugs” the heart and helps it beat

Problems with such devices most often arise due to the fact that chemically quite active blood comes into contact with the material from which the artificial vessels, chambers and valves are made, and gradually destroys it. Therefore, an international group of scientists and engineers proposed a device that helps the heart beat as if from the outside, so that the artificial materials do not come into contact with the blood.

The “second heart bag” is made of a material that, according to a number of characteristics, resembles heart tissue. A “bag” fits the muscle and imparts additional energy to each contraction. Many small drives work like small muscles, putting the “bag” in motion in a natural rhythm set by a living heart.

The device has already been tested in pigs with severe heart failure. Even in animals whose heart pumped only 47% of the required blood volume, the use of the bag helped restore cardiac function to 97%.

The results of the study are published in the journal Science Translational Medicine .


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