Silicon Chip Acts as "Flashlight" for Cardio Surgeons

Silicon Chip Acts as "Flashlight" for Cardio Surgeons
Silicon Chip Acts as "Flashlight" for Cardio Surgeons

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have developed a catheter-based device that will give doctors the ability to see three-dimensional images in real time from inside the coronary arteries, heart, and peripheral blood vessels. Details on this 1.4mm silicon chip device were published online in the February issue of IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics and Frequency Control.

Most imaging devices utilized today only provide cross-sectional images, but this device would allow data from over a hundred elements to be transmitted to the device by 13 small cables and travel effortlessly through blood vessels. The images from the device would provide doctors with far more information than the current standard of cross-sectional ultrasound. It could also reduce the need for major surgery due to the increased visibility of multiple blockages near clogged arteries.

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A current prototype captured image data at 60 frames per second. Researchers hope to conduct animal studies for further development and eventual device commercialization.

For more information, visit the Georgia Institute of Technology website.