Your heart pumps around 2,000 gallons of blood throughout your body each day, probably without you ever giving it much thought. But for those who have had a heart attack, or perhaps who have heart disease or heart problems, it’s hard work for the heart to get that blood where it needs to go. Thankfully, technology has come a long way in helping hearts do their job in a sin-cursed world where things so often go awry.
But most heart-helping mechanical technology is rather invasive and involves touching the blood within the blood vessels. This can cause clots so users must take blood thinners. Researchers have been searching for better options and, according to recent research, soft robotics look promising.
In this new research (which was successfully done with pigs serving as the Guinea pigs) a soft robotic sleeve was inserted over the heart. This robot “pumps and twists to assist cardiovascular function.” It boosted cardiac output from just 40% to 97% of normal levels (normal pig levels that is). This technology has the potential to help those suffering from heart failure stay alive and even perhaps have a better quality of life.
Here’s how the robot works:
Like other recent bots, the thin, adjustable silicon sleeve is powered pneumatically by actuators placed around it. Driven by an air pump, one set of actuators expands and contracts in a pumping motion, while another layer moves helically to twist it. The result is a motion that's uncannily similar to a real heart.
This research is encouraging, especially in a time when heart disease is the number one killer in the United States. These researchers are looking at the design of a healthy heart and seeing how they can mimic it robotically to help a sick heart do what it was designed to do. They’re fighting against the effects of the Curse by looking at the Creator’s original design. And there’s no better place to look than at the work of the all-wise Creator!
For more examples of how technology helps us fight against the effects of the Curse, check out or blog series "Nine Truths of Technology".