Minimally invasive and alternative approaches for long-term LVAD placement: the Vanderbilt strategy
Background: Minimally invasive and alternative strategies for implantation have been anecdotally reported for contemporary continuous-flow left ventricular assist device (CF-LVAD) placement.
Methods: We reviewed our experience at a single center with alternative strategies for implantation of the HeartMate II and HeartWare CF-LVADs, in patients with advanced heart failure (HF). This featured article focuses on the associated surgical techniques and patient management pitfalls.
Results: For appropriately selected cases, our group believes that these alternative strategies allow for the development of novel and less traumatic surgical approaches for CF-LVAD implantation. With reproducible outcomes, these approaches also promise the possibility of increasing the number of high-risk surgical patients who could benefit from CF-LVAD therapies.
Conclusions: This work has detailed a variety of less invasive alternative strategies for implantation of long-term LVADs. These newer approaches have the potential for significant advancements in the field of cardiothoracic surgery. Large-scale collaborative studies will be needed to clarify the potential advantages and disadvantages of these novel techniques on patient outcomes.