Archive for the ‘Medical Technology’ Category

Electronic CPR Board, AutoPulse, Helps Save Lives

ZOLL AutoPulseThis is something that I haven’t heard about until I found this article.  It makes sense, though, as there aren’t many more than a few thousand around worldwide.  Firefighters in Sandy, Oregon are convinced, having used the device to save a life, that it’s one of the best purchases the department has made, and it cost them $15,000.  But they’re quick to brush that off, as EMT First Responder and volunteer firefighter Jon Turcotte said: “We can’t put a price on the value of a human life. The cost is irrelevant.”

Nathan Jaqua, an EMT Basic and student firefighter had this to say of the device: “This has changed the way we work a cardiac arrest incident. We use the same skills, but it changes the entire atmosphere.”


‘Silent’ Heart Attacks more Deadly, Common than thought

Doctor, StethoscopeA study was recently conducted using new imaging technology.  It found that “silent” heart attacks may not only be far more common than suspected, but also more deadly.  Some studies estimate that these heart attacks, often painless, affect 200,000 people in the United States each year.   Duke University’s Dr. Han Kim suspects the numbers may be far higher.

Unrecognized Myocardial Infarctions, the name given to these silent heart attacks, are not yet fully understood, in terms of both prognosis or how often they occur.

Doctors are usually able to tell whether a patient has had a recent heart attack by looking for changes in a number of places.  They look for signature changes on a test of the heart’s electrical activity called an electrocardiogram.  They also check for particular enzymes in the blood.

Doctors will also look for changes on an electrocardiogram called Q-waves.  The only problem is that not all silent heart attacks will result in Q-waves.  Patients who suffer from the silent heart attacks are then treated for heart disease alone.


Defibrillators may Cut Sudden Death Risk

ImplantableHeart defibrillators that are implanted soon after a heart attack can reduce a patient’s risk of sudden death in the days following initial treatment, a study sponsored by device maker Medtronic Inc. has found.

Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators, or ICDs, are 98 percent effective at terminating abnormal heart rhythms that can lead to sudden cardiac death, but are not approved for use in patients who have just suffered a heart attack, said Medtronic, which makes the devices.

The Iris study, released Tuesday at a meeting of the American College of Cardiology in Orlando, Florida, found a statistically significant reduction in sudden cardiac death in a subset of patients who received ICD therapy immediately after a heart attack, Medtronic said.

Patients in the study, who were at high risk for sudden cardiac death, received an ICD in the first month after suffering a heart attack. The trial involved 902 patients at 92 centers in seven European countries.  But ICDs did not reduce mortality from all causes, the company cautioned.

A significant percentage of people who survive a heart attack will ultimately die from a dangerous heart rhythm originating in the lower chambers of the heart, Medtronic said. About 15 percent will die in the first weeks, and an additional 10 percent during the first year.

-via MSNBC

Grand Rapids, MI medical device firm launches three new products on global market

Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences

Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences - Grand Rapids, MI

Grand Rapids, Michigan, the home of ProCPR, is also the home to much growth in the medical field.  My grandpa, when he was being treated for cancer, would only go to Ferguson Hospital downtown.  He was a doctor, himself, and trusted the doctors at that hospital more than anywhere else.  It was a world-class, renown hospital for many years. I don’t know its’ status today, as Spectrum Health bought it years ago.

Right now, we have a new Heart Center, and we’re expanding our medical research facilities (tripling the lab space at one location) as well as building a huge children’s hospital and more in what has become known as both “medical mile” and “medical hill.”


Student Fitted with Bionic Hand

iLimb Hand

i-Limb Hand

A student who had his hand ripped off in an accident has become the second person in the UK to be fitted with a revolutionary bionic replacement.

It’s things like this that I think would help a lot of people out.  I know my life might be different today if this were available thirty or so years ago.  My father only has one hand, due to an accident when he was in college.  Because of that, my own life was effected by the negative effects of that accident.  It all came down to attitude, and a negative attitude was not going to help, but that’s what I dealt with when growing up.

Evan Reynolds, 19, from Haslemere, Surrey, England, UK said it took him minutes to get used to the prosthetic, which has five separately working fingers. His brother contacted Livingston-based firm Touch Bionic that makes the hand after it was featured on television.

Mr Reynolds lost his left hand when the car he was in scraped a post in 2006.  He had been resting it on the vehicle’s wound-down window ledge when it hit a wooden stake at the exit of a car park and his hand was amputated.