Biomedical Engineering : Research

Cleveland Clinic’s Department of Biomedical Engineering is committed to investigation, innovation and translation of scientific discoveries to enhance patient care. Medical innovation is at the heart of our mission – indeed, our "calling" – and we have a proven track record of patenting and product commercialization.

Artificial Heart

Over 23 million patients suffer from heart failure, with 100,000 having no other option but a heart transplant.  Unfortunately, the supply of human hearts donated for transplant is very limited, and fewer than 2% of patients who need one will get a transplant.  Each year, 25,000 patients die while on the waiting list.

Over the past two decades, considerable research has been aimed at developing artificial hearts that can replace failing human hearts and therefore reduce the need for donor hearts.  Although there have been some tremendous successes from a research standpoint, the few existing FDA-approved devices are complex, bulky, and able to fit in only 20% of women and 50% of men.

Researchers in BME have developed a unique total artificial heart that operates silently.  It has an elegantly simple design, with only a single moving part, and will fit essentially all adults and many teens.  The pump is a continuation of work on rotary pumps, which simplify the operation of the device by eliminating the need for heart valves.  Initial testing of our "continuous flow" total artificial heart has shown good results, including very little damage to red blood cells.  This device now even has an option for producing a pulse to more closely imitate a heartbeat.

Summary:  Dr. Golding and his laboratory team have developed a unique total artificial heart that operates silently, with only a single moving component, and will fit all adults and many teens.

See also: Golding Lab