OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to test the hemodynamic effects of partial ventricular support in patients with advanced heart failure. BACKGROUND: The use of current left ventricular assist devices (VADs) that provide full circulatory support is restricted to critically ill patients because of associated risks. Smaller, less-invasive devices could expand VAD use to a larger pool of less-sick patients but would pump less blood, providing only partial support. METHODS: The Synergy Pocket Micro-pump device (CircuLite, Inc., Saddle Brook, New Jersey) pumps approximately 3.0 l/min, is implanted (off pump) via a mini-thoracotomy, and is positioned in a right subclavicular subcutaneous pocket (like a pacemaker). The inflow cannula inserts into the left atrium; the outflow graft connects to the right subclavian artery. RESULTS: A total of 17 patients (14 men), age 53 +/- 9 years with ejection fraction 21 +/- 6%, mean arterial pressure 73 +/- 7 mm Hg, pulmonary capillary wedge pressure 29 +/- 6 mm Hg, and cardiac index 1.9 +/- 0.4 l/min/m(2) received an implant. Duration of support ranged from 6 to 213 (median 81) days. In addition to demonstration of significant acute hemodynamic improvements in the first day of support, 9 patients underwent follow-up right heart catheterization at 10.6 +/- 6 weeks. These patients showed significant increases in arterial pressure (67 +/- 8 mm Hg vs. 80 +/- 9 mm Hg, p = 0.01) and cardiac index (2.0 +/- 0.4 l/min/m(2) vs. 2.8 +/- 0.6 l/min/m(2), p = 0.01) with large reductions in pulmonary capillary wedge pressure (30 +/- 5 mm Hg vs. 18 +/- 5 mm Hg, p = 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: Partial support appears to interrupt the progressive hemodynamic deterioration typical of late-stage heart failure. If proven safe and durable, this device could be used in a relatively large population of patients with severe heart failure who are not sick enough to justify use of currently available full support VADs. (Safety and Performance Evaluation of CircuLite Synergy; NCT00878527).
Tags: Arteries, atrium, blood, capillaries, Catheterization, heart, Heart Catheterization, heart failure, LVAD, methods, Partial Left Ventricular Assist, patients, PLVA, pressure, Research, Risk, Safety, ventricular assist device