Liotta-Hall Intracorporeal Heart Pump

Description
The ventricular assist device or the intrathoracic bypass pump as it was originally named was developed by a surgical research team led by Michael DeBakey (1908-2008), C. William Hall (1922-1992) and Domingo Liotta (1924- ) at Baylor University College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. The pneumatically powered pump is made of Silastic® and utilizes two ball-type valves to direct blood flow in one direction. It was the first bypass pump implanted in a human.
Heart assist devices or ventricular assist devices (VAD’s) are used to provide circulatory assistance to a weakened heart. The device helps pump blood through the aortic valve and into the aorta supplying blood to the rest of the body.
On July 18, 1963 this intrathoracic bypass pump was implanted into a 42 year old man who had undergone surgery to replace a diseased aortic valve. Hours later the patient suffered a cardiac arrest developing anuria (the decline of urine production) and fluid (edema) build up in his lungs. Although the pump help to relieve the edema the patients urine output never increased. The patient died four days after the pump was implanted.
Doctors considered the pump and other new mechanical devices such as the pacemaker and artificial heart valves successful, but they discovered that supplementing and indeed replacing the natural heart would not be easy. Among the problems which they encountered included damage to blood cells and the rejection of the device by the body. In the end physicians concluded, due to its long term support capabilities and the increase of blood circulation an internal artificial pump was feasible.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
intrathoracic pump
cardiology
pump, heart
date made
ca 1963
designer
Hall, C. William
Liotta, Domingo
Physical Description
dacron (overall material)
salastic (overall material)
silicone (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 1 1/8 in x 8 1/2 in x 3 1/2 in; 2.8575 cm x 21.59 cm x 8.89 cm
overall: 11 cm x 3.2 cm x 28.5 cm; 4 11/32 in x 1 1/4 in x 11 7/32 in
place made
United States: Texas, Houston
ID Number
MG*M-10837
catalog number
MG*M-10837
accession number
256189
catalog number
M-10837
subject
Artificial Organs
Cardiology
Surgery
Medicine
Artificial Hearts
Health & Medicine
Artificial Organs
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
Artificial Hearts
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Baylor University

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