For the first time, a pleurapump system designed to manage chronic pleural effusions was implanted in a patient in Marseille (France). This is an innovative device from Sequana Medical AG, a private Swiss medical device company.

Chronic pleural effusions is recurrence of excess fluid which collects around the lungs. The most common causes of it are congestive heart failure, pneumonia, liver disease, end-stage renal disease and cancer. Pleural effusions are managed with medication in most cases, but with certain cancers, chronic effusions are difficult to control. It is estimated that more than 300,000 patients are affected by malignant pleural effusions in the US and Europe each year.

The pleurapump system is a fully implantable battery-powered pump system that automatically and continually moves chronic pleural effusions from the pleural space around the lungs to the bladder, where it is passed naturally from the body. The system is designed to manage fluid balance within the body which helps patients live more independently, improves patient quality of life and reduces health care costs.

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Doctors are excited about this potential new treatment option. Prof. Philippe Astoul, Head of the Department of Thoracic Oncology, Pleural Disease and Interventional Pneumology at Hôpital Nord, Marseille, and Dr. Sophie Laroumagne, investigators in the ADEPT study said: ‘Use of the pleurapump system in patients with malignancy-related pleural effusions looks very promising, and could help patients improve their quality of life at a very challenging stage of their disease progression. We are delighted that Hôpital Nord is leading the way in making this solution available to many thousands of patients in the future.” 

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