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Latest From Heartport Inc.
With half or more of all diagnosed obstructive sleep apnea patients who need continuous positive airway pressure machines unwilling or unable to use these devices, there’s a large unmet need for an alternative treatment. Startups are rising to the challenge with neuromodulation platforms, a mouthguard-like suction device, a nasal device with microblowers, and a vibrating device that nudges patients to turn on their sides.
Most current cardiac diagnostic imaging tests are highly inexact, relying heavily on clinicians' observations. HeartFlow is adapting advanced computer modeling to cardiology to produce a precise, predictive, noninvasive diagnostic that doubles as a treatment planning tool. The test could eliminate unnecessary procedures for patients and save the system money, but is that what interventionalists want?
At a time when the US industry is undergoing perhaps its most serious crisis of leadership and confidence, it was appropriate that Bill George, former chairman and CEO of Medtronic was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement award at this year's Phoenix Medical Device and Diagnostic conference for CEOs, sponsored by PricewaterhouseCoopers, Versant Ventures, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, and Windhover Information. Honoring Bill George at this particular time is propitious because George has spent his career promoting the importance of individual values and responsibility in corporate leadership, and has just published "Authentic Leadership: Rediscovering the Secrets to Creating Lasting Value," a book that defines the qualities he considers essential attributes for corporate leaders to successfully manage companies built to deliver long-term value.
In cardiac surgery, the slow shift to perform coronary bypass graft procedures off-pump has turned anastomotic device technology, a long dormant area of product development, into a hot subject at clinical meetings and attracted the attention of large and small device companies. One start-up, Ventrica, was founded to focus on a new bypass procedure, but shifted its emphasis to an important component of that procedure: an automated coronary anastomotic connector. The company's magnetic technology has given it a head-start on this hardest part of the bypass connector puzzle. Some industry experts and surgeons believe that an easy-to-use, reproducible, automated anastomotic device will boost adoption of off-pump bypass surgery, which has lagged far below initial expectations and will also be essential to the future of robotic surgery. Ventrica's challenge is to attract new groups of surgeons to this approach rather than simply preach to already-converted early adopters.
Surgical Equipment & Devices
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