Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Improving catheter navigation around the heart

Israeli software developers freeze the human heart, virtually, in order to facilitate catheter navigation in the vicinity of the body's most vital organ.
Improving catheter navigation around the heart
Although heart disease remains the number one cause of death, preventive medicine is making headway. Catheterisation is an important investigative technique, helping identify blocked arteries and other problems. But manoeuvring a catheter in and around the heart and other vital organs requires great care. Complicating the situation even further is the fact that the organs, in particular the heart, are in constant motion.

Aiming to reduce the inherent risk in such procedures, researchers in Israel have developed software that creates a virtual image, "freezing" the heart and arteries in place. The remaining organs continue to move in real-time. Catheter navigation is greatly improved, making the catheter operator's job much easier and the procedure much safer.

The new software represents a giant step forward from current software that freezes the entire picture, failing to provide useful real-time information. The Israelis have applied for a patent and are seeking collaborative agreements with catheterisation labs with the aim of licensing the new software.
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