Thoratec gets FDA approval to sell new blood-pumping device

The FDA issued Monday approval for Thoratec Corporation to sell HeartMate II, a blood-pumping device designed for a special category of people.

Thoratec Corporation is a world leader engaged in the research, development, manufacturing and marketing of medical devices for circulatory support, vascular graft, blood coagulation and skin incision applications.

HeartMate II was designed especially for patients who are too slightly built to be implanted with other pumps. It is implanted alongside the natural heart and then removed after the patient gets a heart transplant

HeartMate II is three inches long and weighs about one pound and is reported to pump up to 10 liters of blood per minute.

The preliminary cost of HeartMate II, including batteries and other related equipment, is about $100,000.