Total Artificial Heart (TAH) development at Penn State University and 3M Health Care has progressed from design improvements and manufacturing documentation to in vitro and in vivo testing to characterize the system's hemodynamic response and energetic performance. The TAH system is completely implantable and intended for use as an alternative to transplantation. It includes a dual pusher plate pump and rollerscrew actuator, welded electronics and battery assembly, transcutaneous energy transmission system, telemetry, and a compliance chamber. In vitro testing was conducted on a Penn State mock circulatory loop with glycerol/water solution at body temperature. Tests were performed to characterize the preload and afterload response, left atrial pressure control, and power consumption. A sensitive preload response was demonstrated with left atrial pressure safely maintained at less than 15 mm Hg for flow rates up to 7.5 L/min. Variations in aortic pressure and pulmonary vascular resistance were found to have minimal effects on the preload sensitivity and left atrial pressure control. In vivo testing of the completely implanted system in its final configuration was carried out in two acute studies using implanted temperature sensors mounted on the electronics, motor, and energy transmission coil in contact with adjacent tissue. The mean temperature at the device-tissue interface was less than 4°C above core temperature. ASAIO Journal 1999; 45:189–193.
Copyright © 1999 by the American Society for Artificial Internal Organs