The ABCs of left ventricular assist device echocardiography: a systematic approach
The ABCs of left ventricular assist device echocardiography: a systematic approach. Eur Heart J Cardiovasc Imaging. 2012 Nov;13(11):885-99. Ammar KA1, Umland MM, Kramer C, Sulemanjee N, Jan MF, Khandheria BK, Seward JB, Paterick TE.
Echocardiography is an important imaging modality used to determine the indication of left ventricular assist device (LVAD) implantation for patients with advanced heart failure (HF) and for serial follow-up to make management decisions in patient care post-implant. Continuous axial-flow LVAD therapy provides effective haemodynamic support for the failing left ventricle, improving both the clinical functional status and quality of life. Echocardiographers must develop a systematic approach to echocardiographic assessment of LVAD implantation and post-LVAD implant cardiac morphology and physiology. This approach must include the evaluation of left and right heart chamber morphology and physiology and the anatomy and physiology of the inflow and outflow cannulas and the rotor pump, and the determination of the degree of tricuspid regurgitation and the presence of interatrial shunts and aortic regurgitation. Collaboration among the echocardiography and HF/transplant teams is essential to obtain this comprehensive evaluation. We outline a systematic approach to evaluating patients with HF who have failed conventional therapy and require LVAD therapy as a bridge to cardiac transplantation or destination therapy.