Engineering for IABP and ECMO

  • Roberto Lorusso
  • Attilio Renzulli
  • Sandro Gelsomino


 The use of mechanical devices to compensate the acutely impaired contractile efficiency and power of the heart due to muscular, coronary or valvular diseases has been addressed for almost a century in the history of cardiovascular medicine. Indeed, it is well known that at the beginning of the 20th century, Alexis Carrel and Charles Lindbergh worked together to develop an alternative to the heart pump meant to support the failing circulation. Many other researchers and investigators from 1930 till 1960 investigated several forms and types of mechanical blood circulation and started their application in the clinical setting in the USA, Italy, France, Sweden, Russia, and elsewhere, and extracorporeal circulation (ECC) began to represent a major breakthrough in cardiovascular medicine allowing open heart interventions. The adverse events linked to prolonged ECC and the need for mechanical cardiocirculatory support outside the operating room prompted technicians and clinicians to explore alternative or modified systems to provide partial or full cardiac assistance that could function for several hours, days or weeks. This chapter will describe the development of two systems designed for that objective: a mechanically driven device to partially support the heart through an indirect action, named the intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP), and another system derived from conventional ECC to temporarily help the impaired heart and lung function, named extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO).


Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Poor Left Ventricular Function Peripheral Access Silicone Rubber Membrane Femoral Artery Cannulation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The support, information, and documents provided by Maquet AG, Teleflex and Robert H. Bartlett, are gratefully acknowledged.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roberto Lorusso
    • 1
  • Attilio Renzulli
    • 2
  • Sandro Gelsomino
    • 3
  1. 1.Cardiac Surgery UnitCommunity HospitalBresciaItaly
  2. 2.Cardiac Surgery UnitCommunity HospitalCatanzaroItaly
  3. 3.Cardiovascular Research UnitFlorenceItaly

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