Scientist worried over malfunction of heart devices
– By IANS
Scientists in the US are worried over the increasing malfunction of heart devices, which they say were directly responsible for 61 deaths between 1990 and 2002. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a study at a meeting with physicians and heart-device manufacturers recently, which found that 4,225 defibrillators had failed between 2000 and 2003. Same number of defibrillators failed in the previous 10 years, reports online edition of the Washington Post. Overall, the failure rate of the devices was significantly higher in the second half of the period studied than in the first half, it said.
William H. Maisel, the Harvard Medical School physician who conducted the study, said the increase is significant and contrasts with a consistent decline in the rate at which pacemakers have to be removed. The higher percentage of failures may be a result of design changes that made the devices smaller while their computer memory was increased.