Animal experiments using a total artificial heart in a goat are not easy to perform. The fourth model of the undulation pump total artificial heart (UPTAH4), which was designed to perform a long-term physiological experiment including pulsatile and nonpulsatile TAH operations with a conductance- and arterial pressure-based control method named 1/R control, was implanted in 31 goats weighing 38.5 to 60.4kg (average of 46.8kg). The 1/R control is a physiological flow control method of TAH developed with a conductance (1/R: reciprocal of a resistance) parallel circuit model. The survival periods were from 0.1 to 153 days (average of 14.5 days). The causes of termination were postoperative bleeding in eight goats, respiratory failure in five goats, device failure in 14 goats, dissected aneurysm in two goats, and thrombus in one goat. The thrombus case was the longest surviving goat. The respiratory failure tended to occur when the extracorporeal circulation time was prolonged. Autotransfusion was effective for the prolongation of survival time. The left-right balance control and the suction control were performed successfully in all goats. The 1/R control was performed for a long time in five goats that survived for more than 1 month. With three goats that survived for 48, 52, and 53 days mainly with the pulsatile mode, the 1/R control was stable. With a goat that survived for 73 days, the nonpulsatile mode with the 1/R control could be tested for 3 weeks. With the longest surviving goat that was maintained mainly with the pulsatile mode, the 1/R control was unstable, possibly due to the mismatching of the response time of the control system between the computer and the body. However, liver and kidney functions were almost normal, and the total protein level recovered. Further study to stabilize the 1/R control in the UPTAH is necessary.
ASJC Scopus subject areas