On June 20, WCVB-TV featured Danvers-based Abiomed on its Made In Mass segment, which highlights innovative Commonwealth companies that create their products in the Bay State. Abiomed – one of the nation’s fastest growing medical device companies – is the manufacturer of the world’s smallest heart pump, called the Impella.
When the heart is failing, the Impella, which is smaller than the width of a pencil, can be inserted through the leg and take over the pumping function of the heart – helping it to rest, recover, and in some cases, heal. During the segment, Abiomed CEO Michael Minogue spoke to WCVB host Doug Meehan and described how the Impella has changed the way patients are treated – making it possible to provide less invasive treatment during some cardiac emergencies. “What it replaces is older technology that required a sternotomy or the process of sawing open the sternum and spreading the ribs and putting tubes and pumps into the heart itself,” said Minogue.
Earlier this year, Abiomed received U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Pre-Market Approval (PMA) for its Impella heart pumps to provide treatment for patients undergoing cardiogenic shock – often caused by a severe heart attack. Abiomed’s Impella has already helped enough patients to fill Fenway Park, and eventually the company hopes to assist that many patients every year.