In interventional radiology and cardiology there is an unmet need to control the tip geometry and rigidity of a catheter when engaged into an artery or vein at large distal end distances. Known solutions include tendon-based technologies which offer single plane curves or limited double curves. These devices are typically computer controlled and are part of a large-scale product. In addition, there are various conventional mechanical solutions (e.g. two sheaths) which typically offer single arc solutions and controlled curvature for relatively simple ostium scoring or lightly tortuous navigational scenarios.
The technology suggests a novel catheter with capabilities in the fields of Minimally Invasive Surgery, based on fluid-driven multistability. Contrary to conventional guide catheters which have constant geometrical shapes and are guided by pushing or retracting them into the internal anatomy, the catheter is capable of reducing contact and friction with internal organs and enabling navigation in small passages and complex regions.
- The capability to advance this geometry dynamically into the heart septum is a novel approach to mitral valve replacement
- The ability to reach a stable curve geometry without the need to hold a sensitive guide-wire position
- The ability to control a stable curve state without the explicit need to anchor the catheter
Applications and Opportunities
- Minimally invasive medical procedures, including: interventional radiology, coronary interventions, endoscopy.
- Valve replacement therapy.