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Project example >> Pulmonary Artery Banding in Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome.

The Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome HLHS is a rare congenital heart defect, presenting a combination of several malformations of the heart and the aorta. Characteristic for the hypoplastic left heart is the dependance on the blood flow through the ductus arteriosus.

Babies with HLHS have to be treated within the first days after birth to secure sufficient oxygen-rich blood flow to the body. The Hybrid procedure was developed as an alternative to the established Norwood procedure with a series of surgeries on the open heart within the first weeks. The Hybrid procedure involves as a first step a controlled blood flow restriction (banding) of the pulmonary arteries and the securing of the opening of the ductus. Conventional banding is done with a textile band around the pulmonary artery. After 3 to 6 months reconstructive surgery is performed, including the removal of the banding. Advantage of the Hybrid procedure is the postponing of the first highly invasive surgeries by a few months.

Together with Prof. Dr. René Prêtre, PD Dr. Hitendu Dave and PD Dr. Oliver Kretschmar from the University Children's Hospital Zurich Carag has developed a clip which allows for a quick, simple and controlled banding of the pulmonary arteries. Using the clip instead of the conventional banding gives the vessels room to grow despite blood flow restriction; after removal of the clip no wrinkles or adhesions remain on the vessels.