New Device Helps Protect Patients from Stroke During Heart Valve Replacement

New Device Helps Protect Patients from Stroke During Heart Valve Replacement

New Device Helps Protect Patients from Stroke During Heart Valve Replacement As people age, stroke is one of their greatest fears. In fact, many Americans believe that surviving a stroke with a disability could be worse than dying. With stroke being one of the biggest risks of undergoing heart valve replacement, doctors are enthusiastic about new technology that may help.Almost one in 10 patients that undergo minimally-invasive heart valve replacement, known as trascatheter aortic valve replacement, or TAVR, have a stroke.Most of these strokes occur during the procedure or in the first 72 hours following it, caused by calcium deposits or tissue that breaks loose from the heart valve or surrounding area and travels to the brain, causing damage.However, a new, FDA-cleared technology, called the Sentinel Cerebral Protection System, is now available and has been shown to help protect patients from the risk of stroke during TAVR.It is the only device available in the U.S. to protect the brain during this procedure, and studies have shown that it reduces the incidence of stroke by 63 percent. The Sentinel works by capturing and removing the potentially damaging material released during the procedure before it reaches the brain, providing protected TAVR. Clinical studies have shown that 99 percent of TAVR patients have this type of debris removed after the procedure.It is being offered by selected centers across the country that perform the TAVR procedure.Robert Eckley of Seminole, Florida, was able to undergo protected TAVR using the new technology in a clinical trial before it was approved."My biggest fear was having a stroke, and I really believe if I didn’t have the Sentinel device, I would have had serious problems. I’m grateful to have had a successful surgery and the device did capture a lot of debris," he says."My lifestyle is back to normal and I can do all the activity I used to do before the surgery without dizzy spells, shortness of breath or stopping to rest."For more information about the Sentinel and protected TAVR

=New Hygiene Spray Fights Eyelid Parasites

New Hygiene Spray Fights Eyelid Parasites Millions of Americans suffer from chronic eye conditions caused by thousands of tiny parasites, called Demodex mites, living on their eyelids."These microbes are extremely common and yet largely an unknown problem," says ophthalmologist Kathryn Najafi-Tagol, MD, Founder and Medical Director of the Eye Institute of Marin in California.The parasites burrow into eyelids, Dr. Najafi-Tagol explains."That causes inflammation and plugs the eye glands that produce the oily layer needed to keep tears from evaporating," she says. As a result, people suffer from red, inflamed and dry eyes. Often they also experience a crusty buildup of debris on their eyelids.Moreover, the infestation of parasites often attracts other microbes, such as bacteria, that add to the inflammation and discomfort while at the same time also providing food for the parasites."For many years, we didn’t have a good solution to this problem," Dr. Najafi-Tagol says.Doctors typically used lid scrubs that contained tea tree oil, a substance shown to reduce the mite population. But the large concentration of tea tree oil needed to combat the mites usually irritated the eyes.Fortunately, eye doctors now have a new and better approach, says Dr. Najafi-Tagol.A company called NovaBay Pharmaceuticals (NYSE MKT: NBY) has developed an eyelid hygiene product called Avenova. It is the only lid hygiene product to contain Neutrox, a pure 0.01 percent solution of hypochlorous acid (HOCl). HOCl is a substance that is naturally made by our own cells. In vitro testing shows that NovaBay’s proprietary version (Neutrox) kills bacteria, and Dr Najafi has found that Avenova helps prevent the proliferation of the mites in her patients."It is also very easy to use," says Dr. Najafi-Tagol. "I show my patients how to spray it on their eyelids twice a day. It is completely safe and non-irritating, and my patients find it feels refreshing . My patients who have been suffering for years say that it has finally brought them some relief."Dr. Najafi-Tagol says that she now has prescribed Avenova for more than a thousand patients, with success."Avenova is the first good weapon we have to fight these very unpleasant parasites," she says. "It is a remarkable advance in eye care."
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