Research on new materials and coatings in EUREKA project E! 2866 VASCUCHARGE will extend the life of synthetic vascular grafts from months to years, saving on average €7,000 per operation. As such grafts are used in around 500 out of each million vascular treatments in Europe, the savings could be considerable. Furthermore, the pain and discomfort suffered by patients is significantly reduced, as is the drain on health service resources.
The number of implants used in the surgical treatment of vascular disease has been steadily increasing over the last 20 years, so it is now considered a common procedure. Such tubes replace or bypass part of a blood vessel – principally arteries – and operate in a similar fashion to natural blood vessels.
However, while advances have been made in vascular disease surgery, synthetic implants are still susceptible to thrombosis or clotting, occlusions and infection caused by protein and cell adsorption and coagulation activation. Serious post-surgical problems occur in some 10% of surgical patients, which includes approximately a 2% rate of vascular graft infections. As a result, some grafts have to be replaced after only a few months.
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COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.
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