Our integrated team includes a group of cardiologists who specializes in treating heart failure patients. They see more than 1000 patients in their clinic every year. (Advocate Christ Hospital heart failure clinic)
Sometimes when there is severe damage to the heart from heart disease or high blood pressure, it can cause advanced heart failure. Some of these patients may benefit from a specialized heart pump. These mechanical devices pump the blood from the heart to the rest of the body and are considered life saving. They may be used as destination therapy, meaning they are left in permanently, or they may be used as a temporary support for the heart until it is strong enough to regain its function. Depending on the type of heart failure a patient has, they may require a pump for the left heart, right heart or even both. And any pump that is used may dramatically improve the quality of life for our patients and their families.
Advocate Christ Hospital is one of the select cardiac care centers in the United States to offer this advanced technology.
Some patients with left sided heart failure, or an inability of the left side of the heart to pump efficiently, may require a pump to assist the heart. There are several types of VAD’s available today. The surgeon will discuss which device would be appropriate for you. Most of these devices are implanted within the body with a power supply outside of the body.
The Heartmate II was the first continuous flow device approved by the FDA.
The Heartware device is the least invasive pump which decreases time in the operating room, bleeding, infection and shortens length of stay in the hospital.
Another device that helps the heart pump blood to the body is the pneumatic VAD or PVAD. It is a pump that is external to the body. It can also be used as a permanent device for the patient. Most often it is only desired as a short term intervention until the heart stabilizes or another more permanent device can be implanted.