A County Galway man was recently awarded a biomedical patent on a stroke prevention medical device.
Mike Lawlor, from Tudor Vale, Oranmore, a bioengineering manager at the Galway Clinic, achieved this as a result of work carried out while studying for a biomedical PhD at the University of Limerick.
“The patent is a stroke prevention perfusion device which will allow uninterrupted blood flow to the brain during the angioplasty surgical intervention,” explains Mr Lawlor. “The device consists of a twin balloon and embolic protection filter medical device to allow continued bloodflow to the brain during balloon deployment against the carotid atherosclerotic plaque during the surgical carotid angioplasty and stenting procedure.”
The interruption to blood flow to the brain - which deprives it of the necessary oxygen and nutrients contained within the blood - is a problem for patients during surgical angioplasty.
This occlusion/blockage by the balloon during stent deployment is eliminated by combining the perforated balloon with a filter which maintains antegrade bloodflow to distal tissues while also capturing the fragmented emboli released during the surgical procedure, he says.
The patent application was submitted and approved by the European (German ) Patent Application Deptartment. The device has been manufactured and is currently undergoing clinical trials.