First Baby With Artificial Heart in Japan
BERLIN, August 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ –
– Cross reference: Picture is available at epa european pressphoto agency
(http://www.epa.eu) and http://www.presseportal.de/pm/63857 -
For the first time in the history of Japan it was possible for doctors at the
University of Tokyo, on August 2, 2012, to save a small child who was seriously suffering
from a severe heart condition, aided by a Berlin Heart EXCOR(R) ventricular assist device.
From a medical point of view the 14-month-old girl would only have been able to survive a
few more weeks without the ventricular assist device. Now the artificial heart has taken
over the pumping function of the completely weakened heart. Until a donor heart is found
for the girl, weighing only seven kilograms, her life depends on the mechanical artificial
The little patient would very probably not have survived waiting for transplantation
in Japan, or for transport to another country for transplantation without the mechanical
support. Assisted by the EXCOR(R) VAD, the infant could be stabilized well enough to be
able to wait for transplantation.
The ventricular assist device EXCOR(R) from the German company Berlin Heart has been
successfully employed in more than 1,100 children worldwide since its first implantation
in 1990. It is the only system which can support all patients from newborns up to young
people and adults such that they can survive until the heart transplantation. The EXCOR(R)
VAD is used in 138 centers in 34 countries for bridging the often long waiting periods -
in Europe 57.5% of the patients wait longer than one year for a new heart. Occasionally
the heart can also recover so well, due to the mechanical support, that the assist device
can be explanted and the patient can continue to live with their own heart.
The implantation was performed by Professor Ono and Professor Murakami, with medical
advice from Professor Wearden (Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh) and clinical specialists
from the Berlin Heart company from Germany and the USA, and at the same time constitutes
the beginning of the approval study for the EXCOR(R) Pediatric VAD in Japan. The goal of
the approval study is to be able to supply all of the pediatric patients with this
therapy. In Europe, the USA and many countries in South America and Asia, this system is
already available to patients.
It was announced from clinical circles that the little patient is doing well after the
About Berlin Heart
Berlin Heart GmbH is the only company worldwide which develops, manufactures and
distributes both implantable ventricular assist devices and systems lying external to the
body for patients with heart disease of all ages and body sizes. The systems INCOR(R),
EXCOR(R) Adult and EXCOR(R) Pediatric support short- to long-term pumping function of the
heart and thus present a life-saving therapy possibility for the patient. Furthermore the
user can access clinical and technical support around the clock. Berlin Heart is the
market leader in Germany and Europe.
The EXCOR(R) VAD is employed for mechanical heart support for patients who suffer from
terminal stage heart failure. To date, EXCOR(R) has been used in more than 3,000 patients
worldwide, from new-borns with a body weight of 2.2 kg up to adults.
Contact: BerlinHeart GmbH Katharina Schubert Marketing & PR Wiesenweg 10 12247 Berlin email@example.com Tel: +49-30-81-87-26-00
SOURCE Berlin Heart GmbH