Who will be the next Medtronic? What will be Minnesota's next breakthrough industry? James Walsh will provide the latest information and commentary on the people, companies and trends driving innovation in Minnesota. From visionary entrepreneurs to game changing technologies, this blog offers a window into the future of Minnesota's economy.
Consumers Union, the policy and advocacy division of Consumer Reports, is taking its campaign to convince medical device companies to provide warranties for hip and knee implants directly to the doctors who perform these operations. CU has launched an ad campaign and will be conducting outreach activities this week during the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) conference in New Orleans.
Consumers Union has called on medical device manufacturers to provide warranties to cover the cost of replacing hip or knee implants that fail prematurely because of a product defect.
This week’s ad campaign includes an ad in support of the campaign in the New Orleans edition of USA Today, a mobile billboard that will circle the Morial Convention Center and ads at the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport. Consumers Union staff and activists will be outside the convention center where the AAOS annual meeting is taking place.
“Getting a hip or knee implant is a major life decision and high stakes purchase for patients,” said Lisa McGiffert, director of Consumers Union’s Safe Patient Project (www.safepatientproject.org). “Medical device makers should be willing to provide a warranty that spells out how long they will stand by their products and a process for getting it replaced at no cost if the implant turns out to be defective.”
Nearly 1.2 million hip and knee surgeries are done in the U.S. each year – making them an increasingly common procedure. Demand is expected to continue rising. By 2030, an estimated 4 million of these procedures will take place annually. More than half of those patients are expected to be under 65 years old.
Most hip and knee implants perform well and can last up to 20 years. But the AAOS estimates that 10 percent will fail for a range of reasons, from infection and trauma to loosening or poor implant positioning.
Are you a distance runner who has benefitted from medical technology? Medtronic wants you… to run as a Global Hero.
Once again, the Fridley-based medical technology giant is sponsoring its Global Heroes team and will select up to 25 runners, who will receive a paid entry for themselves and a guest to the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon or the Medtronic TC 10 Mile. They will also receive airfare and accommodations for the Global Hero and a guest.
The 2014 Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon weekend will take place October 3-5, 2014. Since 2006, 184 runners representing 27 different countries and a myriad of chronic and degenerative disease conditions have run the beautiful course that winds through the lakes and neighborhoods of Minneapolis and St. Paul.
Applications and information for the 2014 Medtronic Global Hero team are available at medtronic.com/globalheroes. The application deadline is April 25, 2014.
To qualify as a Global Hero, runners must currently be using a medical device therapy to treat the following disease categories: heart disease, diabetes, chronic pain, spinal disorders, or neurological, gastroenterology and urological disorders. Eligible medical devices include any pacemaker or implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD), any spinal device, any neurological device, any insulin pump, or any heart valve. The device does not have to have been made by Medtronic.
Runners will be chosen by a committee of Twin Cities In Motion. Certain conditions may apply and applicants must certify that they have discussed race participation with their physician.
National Institutes of Health researchers are launching a clinical trial to test a device that seeks to rewire parts of the brain in hopes of reducing or eliminating tinnitus, a persistent buzzing or ringing in the ears in the absence of any real sound.
The small clinical trial is recruiting volunteers and will be conducted at three centers – at the University of Texas at Dallas, the University at Buffalo (SUNY), Buffalo and at the University of Iowa, Iowa City. An additional site will be added later in the year. More information about the trial and enrollment is available on the study’s website, http://www.tinnitustrial.com, or at http://www.ClinicalTrials.gov.
Roughly 10 percent of the adult population of the United States has experienced tinnitus lasting at least five minutes in the past year, and approximately 10 million have been bothered enough by the condition to seek a doctor. Although tinnitus may be only an annoyance for some, for others the relentless ringing causes fatigue, depression, anxiety, and problems with memory and concentration. Available treatments help some people cope, but current therapies lack the potential to significantly reduce the bothersome symptoms of tinnitus.
A Minnesota man has been recognized by the American College of Cardiology for transforming his life, and his body, after a procedure to treat his atrial fibrillation.
Marcus McCleery of New London weighed nearly 400 pounds, largely due to his heart condition, making it nearly impossible for him to live an active life. But, after two surgeries in two years, McCleery took back control of his life.
Over time, as he became more and more active and was smarter about what he ate, McCleery lost 183 pounds. The one-time couch potato now participates in triathlons, is an avid cyclist, runner and kayaker. He volunteers for the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation. He also created the Web site: , www.move15minutesaday.com.
For his example, McCleery was recognized by the ACC’s “I am CardioSmart” Contest.
The Star Tribune featured McCleery’s journey here: http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/health/181118921.html
For more information about the symptoms of atrial fibrillation and its treatments, go here: www.cardiosmart.org/Heart-Conditions/Atrial-Fibrillation.
ACIST Medical Systems of Eden Prairie on Wednesday announced the first successful human case to use its RXi Rapid Exchange FFR System in the United States.
Dr. Jeff Chambers of Metropolitan Heart and Vascular Institute in Coon Rapids performed the Fractional Flow Reserve (FFR) procedure on Monday. FFR is used to detect and assess blockages in coronary arteries that could require angioplasty.
The new technology was designed to provide physicians with a faster and easier way to perform FFR procedures, ACIST said in a statement.
“The ACIST Rapid FFR System offers a significant step forward in diagnostic assessment,” said Chambers, an interventional cardiologist and the director of the Cardiac Catheterization Lab at Mercy Hospital. “With Rapid FFR, measurements can be obtained quickly and easily without disrupting cath lab workflow… The time savings and ease of use are significant advantages, especially in complex coronary interventions like the ones we routinely perform here at Mercy."
Tom Morizio, president and chief operating officer of ACIST, said: “The RXi Rapid Exchange FFR System is a major step forward in the transformation of ACIST…. The technology in the RXi Rapid Exchange FFR System will continue to evolve and advance our mission to simplify the complexities in the Cath Lab.”
ACIST received FDA clearance for the RXi system in January. The company conducted a clinical trial in New Zealand and is currently performing an additional study in Europe. ACIST is moving forward with a limited market rollout of the system in advance of a full global release in the spring of 2014. For more information about ACIST, go to: www.acist.com.