Sometimes used as a "bridge-to-transplant" or as a permanent therapy alternative called "destination therapy," the LVAD is a mechanical pump-type device that is surgically implanted to help maintain the pumping ability of a heart that is unable to effectively function on its own. These mechanical heart pumps can significantly improve a patient's health and survival rate.
One typical type of LVAD involves a tube connected to the left ventricle that directs blood from the ventricle into a pump. The pump then sends blood into the aorta (the large blood vessel leaving the left ventricle), which effectively bypasses the weakened ventricle.
United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) is committed to providing accurate and reliable information for transplant patients. The content on this page was originally created on May 5, 2006 by UNOS and last modified on May 11, 2006. The following sources were used as references:
American Heart Association, retrieved May 11, 2006.