The Pulsatile Catheter (PUCA) pump is a trans-arterial pulsatile ventricular assist device that can be used for short-term left ventricular support. The separate inflow and outflow valves in the first version of the device (PUCA-I) were replaced by a single inflow/outflow valve in the latest PUCA pump version (PUCA-II). The new combined valve was tested during in vitro (mock circulation) and in vivo experiments for valve leakage, flow resistance, and thrombus formation. During the in vitro experiments a maximum valve leakage of 6% during ejection and 21% during aspiration was found. The maximum flow resistance coefficient (K) was 4. The animal experiments demonstrated that the PUCA-II could be positioned within a few minutes into the left ventricle without X-ray guidance and without using a vascular graft. Thrombi were not found in the combined valve after total pump time of 3 hours, which proved the good washout of the valve. Initial experiments to position the pump in the right ventricle through the pulmonary artery were successful and contributed to the development of a new application for the device.
- In vitro
- In vivo