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Format: 04/16/2014
Format: 04/16/2014


Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Allegheny General Hospital gets OK for heart failure device

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

The FDA has approved a new technology that was tested at Allegheny General Hospital for patients with advanced heart failure who do not qualify for a transplant.

The Thoratec HeartMate II Left Ventricular Assist System, or LVAS, can now be used for "destination therapy" — or long-term treatment of those patients, the hospital announced today. The LVAS could be a life-saving option for up to 100,000 people, the hospital said. It is the first continuous flow chronic LVAS to receive FDA approval for bridge-to-transplantation and destination therapy, the hospital said.

AGH participated in a clinical trial that involved 200 patients at 38 centers. In 2009, doctors at the North Side hospital successfully implanted 36 of the devices and currently has three patients using the device.

About 6 million Americans suffer from congestive heart failure, with 600,000 new cases diagnosed each year, according to the American Heart Association. Heart transplants are performed on about 2,000 people each year. More than 250,000 other patients have no treatment options, the hospital said.


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