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Medical Equipment And Supplies

July 3, 2006 | Mary Beckman, Special to The Times
ELIZABETH GOLDRING, a poet and artist, is nearly blind. Now, after years of hard work, she can view words and faces and wander through a virtual art gallery of her work. An instrument called a "seeing machine," under development at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she works, is making the point that just because a person is blind doesn't necessarily mean she can't see.
June 27, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Boston Scientific Corp. on Monday recalled nearly 23,000 heart pacemakers and defibrillators that could fail because of an electrical flaw, and the company asked doctors to check 27,000 patients who had been implanted with potentially faulty devices. The announcement marked the second time Boston Scientific has warned about products of the former Guidant Corp. since the Natick, Mass.-based company bought Guidant in April for $27 billion. Shares of Boston Scientific fell $1.
June 8, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Newly unsealed court documents show that Guidant Corp. drafted a letter warning doctors of a dangerous electrical malfunction in some of its devices designed to restore a normal heartbeat, but the letter was never sent.
May 13, 2006 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Medical equipment seized in a methamphetamine lab raid had been stolen from Stanford Medical Center, where one of the suspects worked, officials said. Benjamin Ruezga, 49, one of six men arrested May 5 when officers raided his house and seized 5 pounds of methamphetamine valued at $225,000, worked in the warehouse at the center and had access throughout the hospital.
April 14, 2006 | From Bloomberg News
Medical device maker Medtronic Inc. said Thursday that U.S. regulators had approved a system for diabetics that continually monitors blood-sugar levels and recommends insulin doses to control them. The device, approved by the Food and Drug Administration, relays blood-glucose readings every five minutes from a sensor inserted under the skin to a pager-size pump, the Minneapolis-based company said.
April 10, 2006 | Mary Beckman, Special to The Times
FOR 10 minutes most days, 10-year-old Sonya Gomez stands on what looks like a gently vibrating bathroom scale. Leaning on a walker because her body has been weakened by cerebral palsy, she stands in hopes that an experimental treatment will fortify her bones and invigorate her muscles, even though she can barely tell anything's happening. "Every morning she eats breakfast while I'm getting ready. She brushes her teeth. Then she gets on the machine," says her mother, Anna Gomez, of Whittier.
March 30, 2006 | From Bloomberg News
Guidant Corp. said Wednesday that it had suspended shipments of a new heart stent in Europe and stopped enrolling patients to test the product in Japan because of factory quality problems. About 1% of Guidant's drug-coated Xience stents made at its Temecula plant didn't meet quality standards, the Indianapolis company said. It did not say how many suspect stents were implanted, but said no patients were injured.
October 14, 2005 | From Bloomberg News
Guidant Corp. told U.S. regulators that it learned of six additional failures of implantable heart defibrillators since issuing a July notice about the devices used to regulate cardiac rhythms. The failures occurred in the Contak Renewal and Renewal 2 brand of devices, the Food and Drug Administration said. The two devices were among models included in warnings Guidant sent to doctors in June.
September 16, 2005 | From Bloomberg News
Abbott Laboratories said it won U.S. approval of a carotid-artery stent for preventing strokes, beating Johnson & Johnson, the world's biggest device maker, in the race to compete with a device sold by Guidant Corp. Abbott will comply with the Food and Drug Administration's request for continued research on the device after approval, a company spokesman said.
July 19, 2005 | Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, Times Staff Writer
Government regulators lack an effective system to monitor the safety of medical devices, which include items as diverse as incubators for premature babies, surgical clamps and cardiac pacemakers, a scientific panel concluded in a report issued Monday. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which is responsible for the safety of medical devices as well as drugs, needs additional authority from Congress and better internal procedures, according to an Institute of Medicine panel.
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