Miracor Aims to Cure More Than 350K Broken Hearts Per Year with New PCI Intervention System

Miracor Medical Systems is a privately held medical technology company based in Vienna, Austria and is aiming to help patients who have experienced cardiac surgery or suffer from acute coronary syndrome (ACS) improve their quality of life.

Their main technology is called the PISCO® (Pressure-Controlled Coronary Sinus Occlusion) Impulse System and it is designed to improve blood flow in the heart tissue, which improves the overall heart function after a severe heart attack. Three million patients are treated for restricted coronary blood flow every year. More than 350,000 of these patients still have poor heart tissue blood flow even after successful balloon angioplasty or stent placement.

This system is CE-marked and can be used during coronary revascularization procedures following a heart attack or other types of acute coronary syndromes to intermittently increase the pressure in the coronary venous system. Currently, the technology is only approved for investigative purposes in the United States.

How It Works

During a heart attack, one or more arteries are blocked by plaque build-up, which limits blood flow to the heart tissue. About 1.8 million patients per year globally will suffer permanent heart damage. They typically receive a Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI) such as balloon angioplasty or stent placement to prevent further damage and to support circulation. However, they do not typically receive therapy for the damaged heart tissue.

That’s where PISCO comes in. The Impulse Catheter is inserted on the venous side of the heart and intermittently inflated to increase blood pressure in the heart muscle. This pressure build-up causes a redistribution of flow into the damaged area of the heart.

Initial Outlook

In the initial round of clinical trials, Professor Jan Piek, MD and his group at the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam performed 10 successful PISCO procedures on stable angina patients.

Professor Piek reported that even when a patient receives a successful initial PCI such as ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), the patient still has limited blood flow in about 30 percent of cases. “Our study demonstrates that PISCO significantly increased the redistribution of blood into ischemic myocardium.”

While these results are limited, the mortality and morbidity following a PCI procedure remains sizable, reports Miracor. More trials are underway.

To learn more about Miracor’s PISCO system, please visit www.miracormedical.com. Miracor presented its products and technologies at OneMedForum SF 2012, on January 9 – 12.

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