Millions of people are touched by heart failure each year, as a leading cause of death worldwide. It can develop over time or appear rapidly without much warning or time for life-saving treatment.
For patients in remote areas and developing countries the prospect of suffering from heart failure is an even scarier prospect as access to treatments in specialised cardiovascular and transplant facilities are simply out of reach both geographically and often financially.
Alice Boone wants to bridge the gap for these patients by developing a low cost and rapidly implantable device to assist the heart during heart failure. Alice’s unique and innovative concept consists of a small balloon that will be implanted into the left ventricle, without disrupting any of the important structures within the heart. With each inflation the balloon will assist to push blood out of the heart, helping the heart to pump blood while allowing it to “rest” and reduce any damaging strain at this delicate time.
The success of this project would giving critically ill patient’s time, time to reach the specialised treatment they need or, in future, perhaps live comfortably with this life saving device into old age.
The introduction of a revolutionary treatment like this for people suffering heart failure in remote areas and developing countries could save the lives of hundreds and thousands of patients each year. Allowing people who faced almost certain death to have a second chance at life and return to their families.
Thanks to $2 million in funding through The Common Good, The Prince Charles Hospital will be the first in Queensland to offer this technology to public patients.