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ORANGE COUNTY BRIEFLY

Irvine Company Wins Approval for Heart Catheter

April 22, 1998|Barbara Marsh

CardioVascular Dynamics Inc., a tiny Irvine maker of medical devices, said Tuesday that its new catheter for treating clogged heart vessels received regulatory approval.

Michael Henson, the company's chairman and chief executive, said the device is intended to cause less damage during cardiovascular surgery than those currently in use. The catheter's balloon, which expands to clear blocked vessels, is designed to better fit the natural contour of the vessel, he said.

Regulatory approval came several months earlier than expected, so the company won't be prepared to start making the device in production quantities for a few months yet, he noted.

Still, he added, "it's a time of celebration for a start-up company." About 120 employees gathered shortly before the end of business Monday to celebrate with champagne.

The company's stock moved up to $7.13 a share in early trading after Tuesday's announcement, then retreated to close at $6.50, unchanged.

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