Background: Patients bridged to heart transplantation with left ventricular assist devices (LVADs) have been reported to have higher post-transplant mortality compared with those without LVADs. Our aim was to determine the impact of the type of LVAD and implant era on post-transplant survival. Methods: In this study we included 8,557 patients from the registry of the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation. We examined post-transplant outcomes in 1,100 patients bridged to transplant with pulsatile-flow LVADs between January 2000 and June 2004 (first era), 880 patients bridged with pulsatile-flow LVADs between July 2004 and May 2008 (second era), and 417 patients bridged with continuous-flow LVADs in the second era. Patients who required intravenous inotropes but not LVAD support (n = 2,728) and patients who did not require either LVAD or inotropes (n = 3,432) served as controls. Results: Post-transplant survival of patients bridged with pulsatile LVADs improved significantly between the first and the second era (p = 0.03). In the second era, there was no significant difference in post-transplant survival of patients bridged with pulsatile- vs continuous-flow LVADs (p = 0.26), and survival rates in the 2 groups were not statistically different from that of the non-LVAD group. Graft rejection was similar in patients bridged with LVADs compared to those without LVADs. Conclusions: In the most recent era, the use of either pulsatile- or continuous-flow LVADs did not result in increased post-transplant mortality. This finding is important as the proportion of patients with LVADs at the time of transplant has been rising.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was in part funded by the 2010 International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation “Branislav Radovancevic Memorial” Best Mechanical Circulatory Support Abstract Award. These data were presented as a plenary session at the 30th annual meeting of the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation, April 2010, Chicago, Illinois.
Copyright 2011 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.
- assist device
- heart transplantation
- mechanical support