The Sree Chitra Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology has developed equipment for closing holes in the heart without a surgical procedure. The device called ASD occluder has been developed using nitinol wire and polyester. The researchers have applied for securing the Indian patent for the design.
The occluder was developed by the technical centre for bio-medical devices of the bio-medical technology department at the Sree Chitra Institute that comes under the central department of science and technology. The polyester shield is fixed inside a cage of nitinol wire mesh. The occluder could be inserted in the hole using a catheter. The nitinol wire cage would expand as soon as it comes out of the catheter. The polyester shield would then absorb the blood and seal the hole in the heart. Eventually, new cells would grow here.
Dr. Sujesh Sreedharan and professors of the cardiology department Dr. S Bijulal and Dr. KM Krishnamoorthy headed the team that developed the occulder device. Currently, the holes in the heart are sealed using imported devices that cost up to Rs 60,000. Once the Chitra occluders are introduced into the market, the price of such devices will go down. The technology will be handed over to private companies soon.
The device would be introduced in the market after conducting experiments in both animals and in humans.