International Perfusion Association


Evolution of Mechanical Circulatory Support for Advanced Heart Failure

This comprehensive review highlights the significant advancements in Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD) therapy, emphasizing its evolution from the early pulsatile flow systems to the cutting-edge continuous-flow devices, particularly the HeartMate 3 (HM3) LVAD. These advancements have notably improved survival rates, reduced complications, and enhanced the quality of life (QoL) for patients with advanced heart failure. The dual role of LVADs, as a bridge-to-transplantation and destination therapy is discussed, highlighting the changing trends and policies in their application. The marked reduction in hemocompatibility-related adverse events (HRAE) with the HM3 LVAD, compared to previous models signifies ongoing progress in the field. Challenges such as managing major infections are discussed, including innovative solutions like energy transfer systems aimed at eliminating external drivelines. It explores various LVAD-associated complications, including HRAE, infections, hemodynamic-related adverse events, and cardiac arrhythmias, and underscores emerging strategies for predicting post-implantation outcomes, fostering a more individualized patient care approach. Tools such as the HM3 risk score are introduced for predicting survival based on pre-implant factors, along with advanced imaging techniques for improved complication prediction. Additionally, the review highlights potential new technologies and therapies in LVAD management, such as hemodynamic ramp tests for optimal speed adjustment and advanced remote monitoring systems. The goal is to automate LVAD speed adjustments based on real-time hemodynamic measurements, indicating a shift towards more effective, patient-centered therapy. The review concludes optimistically that ongoing research and potential future innovations hold the promise of revolutionizing heart failure management, paving the way for more effective and personalized treatment modalities.

Keywords: HeartMate 3; Left ventricular assist device; Mechanical Circulatory Support.

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