Graphics for a publication on a newly developed prosthetic heart valve. In contrast to conventional prosthetic heart valves that are fixed in size and need to be replaced with multiple open-heart surgeries as a child grows, this new geometrically adaptable heart valve would accommodate growth of the heart and thus allow children to keep the same valve until adulthood.

Inspired by the human venous valve, whose geometry is optimized to preserve functionality across a wide range of constantly varying volume loads and diameters, the geometrically adaptable heart valve is a synthetic bileaflet valve analog that exhibits similar adaptability to dimensional and shape changes. The new prosthetic valve adapts to the increasing heart dimensions of a growing child via periodic, non-invasive mechanical balloon expansion.

Team: Sophie Hofferberth, Mossab Saeed, Lara Tomholt, Matheus Fernandes, Christopher Payne, Karl Price, Gerald Marx, Jesse Esch, David Brown, Jonathan Brown, Peter Hammer, Richard Bianco, James Weaver, Elazer Edelman, Pedro del Nido.

Boston Children's Hospital
Harvard Graduate School of Design
Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University
Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
University of Minnesota

S.C. Hofferberth, M.Y. Saeed, L. Tomholt, M.C. Fernandes, C.J. Payne, K. Price, G.R. Marx, J.J. Esch, D.W. Brown, J. Brown, P.E. Hammer, R.W. Bianco, J.C. Weaver, E.R. Edelman, P.J. del Nido. (2020) A geometrically adaptable heart valve replacement. Science Translational Medicine, 12, eaay4006.
Cover article

Media coverage
Press release by Boston Children's Hospital
"A heart valve that grows along with a child could reduce invasive surgeries" by Boston Children's Hospital