A Surgical Glue that can Literally Mend your Broken Heart.
A medical researcher has recently referred to the interior of the human heart as a ‘hurricane of blood’. This is understandable, as the heart normally beats at 60 times per minute. One doesn’t have to be a heart surgeon to realize how complex and invasive it is for the surgeon to operate in such an environment, with continuous rivers of blood gushing around. Even when the heartbeat can be slowed down, applying sutures on a dynamic organ where blood is flowing is no easy task. Also, recovery times for an open-heart procedure can be lengthy and prone to many complications. The problems with an open-heart procedure are compounded when the patient is an infant- because the heart is so small.
According to a recent story in Bloomberg, a group of researchers at Gecko Biomedical have developed an alternative to suturing in the form of a new glue that can seal by binding with tissue, while at the same time, is able to repel fluids. The glue creates a strong yet flexible seal, which permits the tissue to regenerate and heal, as it naturally bonds. The glue itself will degrade and disappear over time. This innovative technique eliminates the use of staples and stitches, as well as invasive intervention. The glue is both strong, and flexible enough to be used on a beating heart.
The surgical glue can often be applied to the heart via a small incision through which a syringe is inserted to the site where it is needed. This ability to apply the glue with minimal invasiveness, will cut down on the necessity of performing open heart surgeries, which involve cracking open the chest and exposing the heart. The procedure will thus be far less expensive, and will drastically cut down on the risk of infection. The recovery time is accordingly radically reduced as well. Amazingly, medical science has found a new way- in the form of sci-fi surgical glue, to mend your broken heart. Gecko Biomedical’s pioneering work will be highlighted in Bloomberg’s latest installment of THE SPARK. Human trials are expected to commence next year.