Temporary Heart Assist Devices
Our Artificial Heart Program offers life-saving temporary assist devices that support patients from several hours to several days. These devices are used if a patient’s heart is rapidly failing, if they need additional hemodynamic support (or blood flow) during a procedure in the heart catheterization lab, or if they suffer unforeseen complications from open heart surgery. Temporary assist devices can be implanted in the catheterization lab in 30 minutes or less.
The Impella device is a small, minimally invasive cardiac assist device that can be inserted in the catheterization lab. The Impella pump is located at the tip of a catheter that is advanced across the patient’s aortic valve. Blood is withdrawn from the patient’s left ventricle and delivered to the patient’s aorta, the largest artery in the human body.
TandemHeart (CardiacAssist, Inc.)
The TandemHeart is a temporary ventricular assist device that is also implemented in the heart catheterization lab. An external blood pump is secured to the patient’s thigh and a cannula, or tube, travels to the left side of the patient’s heart to retrieve oxygenated blood. A second cannula allows blood to travel from the pump into the patient’s vasculature.
Temporary Centrifugal VADs
Temporary centrifugal ventricular assist devices are external blood pumps connected to the patient’s heart and vessels by cannulae. These systems can be used to support either the left, right or both sides of the heart. They can also be used along with an oxygenator to support both the patient’s heart and lungs – a therapy called cardiopulmonary support.