Browse Prior Art Database

Publication Date: 2009-Mar-17
Document File: 5 page(s) / 228K

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The Prior Art Database

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            According to various examples, as shown in FIG. 1, a sensor assembly 2 includes a sensor module 6 coupled to an expandable anchor 10.  According to various examples, as shown in FIG. 2, the sensor module 6 includes a sensor module housing 14 having a first end 16 and a second end 18.  Contained within the sensor module housing 14 is a power source such as, for example, a battery 19 and at least one sensor 20.  In many examples, at least one end 16 or 18 of the housing 14 includes a connection feature 22 for facilitating connection of the sensor module 6 to the expandable anchor 10.

            The sensor can include any suitable sensor for sensing a physiological or hemodynamic parameter within the patient’s heart or in a blood vessel.  For example, the sensor can be a sensor for detecting any of temperature, blood pressure, strain, fluid flow, chemical properties, electrical properties, magnetic properties, and the like.  According to one example, the sensor is a pressure sensor configured to sense blood pressure in a pulmonary artery of a patient’s heart, such as in the right pulmonary artery. In some examples, the sensor is an implantable sensor configured to wirelessly transmit a signal indicative of a hemodymamic parameter (e.g. blood pressure) to a device located external to the patient’s body or to another device located within the patient’s body.

            The expandable anchor 10 is coupled to the sensor module 6 and, upon deployment at a target location within the vasculature, is adapted to expand such that it contacts and frictionally engages the vessel walls securing and stabilizing the sensor module 6 at the target location.  In some examples, the anchor 10 is made from a shape memory material such as Nitinol, and is configured to self-expand when retracted from within a delivery catheter.

            In some examples the expandable anchor 10 is mechanically coupled to the connection feature 22 on the sensor module 6 using an O-ring or a C-ring 32, as further shown with respect to Figure 5.  The O-ring or C-ring 32 can be made from a variety of biocompatible materials including, but not limited to, the following: stainless steel, MP35N, titanium, platinum, tantalum, platinum chromium alloys, and cobalt-chromium alloys.  Additionally, in some examples, the O-ring or C-ring 32 can be fabricated from a radiopaque material and/or can include one or more radiopaque makers to facilitate visualization of the sensor module 6 within the body.

            During manufacture, the expandable anchor 10 is fabricated by laser cutting a Nitinol tube, forming a plurality of interconnected struts.  In some examples, the expandable anchor is fabricated such that it includes a ring or collar 24 at...