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Highlights and lessons of AMT Medical

AMT Medical’s CEO Rutger Tulleken shares his highlights and lessons from 2022.

AMT Medical develops medical devices, including an innovative heart bypass system. Millions of patients per year undergo intrusive heart surgery that includes risks of complications and intensive rehabilitation. AMT Medical is developing the ELANA (Excimer Laser Assisted Nonocclusive Anastomosis) heart bypass, which allows bypass surgery on the beating heart through small holes in the chest. Since open surgery is no longer necessary, the patient only needs to allow the small incisions to heal during a short recovery time. It also means less chance of infections or internal bleeding. 

Rutger Tulleken, CEO AMT Medical
Rutger Tulleken, CEO AMT Medical

How did it all start and where are you in your mission for the company? 

We at AMT Medical have one big dream: to make open heart surgery obsolete. Until recently, this seemed like an impossible task. Until now. Today our dream is becoming a reality, via the use of the ELANA process in open heart surgery. 

What motivates you to engage in this mission?   

The ELANA process means less risk of complications during surgery and less time spent rehabilitating the patient. Within a few days, the patient can go home and enjoy life without pain and dysfunction. 

What was the highlight of 2022 for your company? 

In 2022, the first ten patients have been operated with our ELANA technology in a study context. We still must pinch ourselves regularly to fully realize that we have reached this milestone. After years of preparation, investments, laboratory tests and animal studies, constant refinement, and perfecting, we have succeeded. We have often been told that only 1 in 100 companies makes it to the patient phase. It is fantastic that we are that one company. 

Which lesson(s) can you share that you have learned as CEO of AMT Medical?  

An important lesson is to first create an enormous commitment of the surgeons involved from the cardio-surgical centers. A second important lesson is to invest in our very professional and experienced team, people who are fully dedicated and believe in our dream.  

Within your area of expertise, what innovations or developments did you see in 2022 that will make impact on the health sector in the future?  

There are one million patients who need a bypass operation. Many cardiac surgeons are following us closely because they would like to use the technology as soon as possible. The industry has been looking for a connector for sutureless anastomoses for 30 years. We have developed technology for this, safe and standardized. 

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Katja Jansen