News Column

Patent Issued for System for Implanting a Replacement Valve

May 26, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Cardiovascular Week -- A patent by the inventors Tower, Allen J. (North Lawrence, NY); Bonhoeffer, Philipp (Paris, FR); Martin, Michael L. (Nicholville, NY), filed on April 23, 2002, was published online on May 13, 2014, according to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, by NewsRx correspondents (see also Medtronic, Inc.).

Patent number 8721713 is assigned to Medtronic, Inc. (Minneapolis, MN).

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "There exists a need in the medical field for an improved system for carrying out the percutaneous implantation of biological venous valvular replacements for human valves and in particular cardiac valves. Up until recently, many valves such as heart valves had to be replaced surgically. Accordingly, the patients were exposed to all the potential dangers of major surgery.

"Recently, procedures have been devised for implanting biological valves harvested from animals percutaneously into humans to replace damaged or malfunctioning valves. Andersen et al. in U.S. Pat. No. 5,840,081 describes a system for carrying out such a procedure. In Andersen et al., a biological cardiac valve is mounted upon the expandable stent of a catheter. The assembly is crimped onto the balloon section of the catheter and a protective cap is placed over the package. The catheter is then passed through a body lumen into a predetermined site within the heart. The package is then moved out of the cap and is positioned in the implantation site using well known positioning techniques. The balloon is inflated causing the stent with the replacement valve attached thereto to expand thus implanting the valve within the desire site.

"The Andersen et al. type system works well in practice in that it can be carried out in a relatively short period of time when compared to surgical procedures and the risk to the patient is considerably reduced. However, the biological prosthesis that include the venous valvular replacement and the stent tends to be relatively bulky and thick even when tightly compressed against the deflated balloon and thus sometimes difficult to move through the body lumen into the implantation site. Most catheters in present day use can not deliver the necessary torque to guide the prosthesis through the body lumen, particularly where there is a relatively tight bend in the path of travel. In addition, most of the catheters that are equipped with protective caps do not possess the rigidity needed to hold the prosthesis in the desired location as the balloon is cleared for inflation."

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent, NewsRx journalists also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "It is therefore an object of the present invention to improve percutaneous delivery systems for placing a biological venous valvular replacement for a defective valve within an implantation site.

"A further object of the present invention is to improve the steerability of a balloon catheter used to implant a biological valve percutaneously in a patient.

"A still further object of the present invention is to more accurately place a biological valve prosthesis with a desired implantation site.

"Another object of the present invention is to provide a more compact system for percutaneously inserting a biological replacement valve into an implantation site.

"These and other objects of the present invention are attained by a system for percutaneously inserting a biological venous valvular replacement for a defective valve within a patient through a body lumen. The system includes a balloon catheter upon which a collapsable stent containing a venous valvular replacement is mounted in a collapsed condition upon the deflated balloon. A protective shield is placed over the balloon and the replacement valve unit. The shield is movable from a closed position over the balloon to a fully opened position without having to axially displace the balloon so that the balloon can be inflated to expand the stent and accurately implant the replacement valve. A central lumen formed of a stainless steel tube passes through the catheter to provide a one to one torque ratio between the proximal end of the catheter and its distal end. The wall thickness of the venous valvular replacement is reduced from its original size by between 50% and 90% to provide for a more compact replacement package when the package is collapsed upon the uninflated balloon."

URL and more information on this patent, see: Tower, Allen J.; Bonhoeffer, Philipp; Martin, Michael L.. System for Implanting a Replacement Valve. U.S. Patent Number 8721713, filed April 23, 2002, and published online on May 13, 2014. Patent URL:

Keywords for this news article include: Surgery, Prosthetics, Medtronic Inc., Medical Devices, Balloon Catheter, Surgical Technology.

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Source: Cardiovascular Week

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