Congestive heart failure is occurring in the United States at an increasing rate. Transplantation remains the treatment of choice for end-stage heart failure. Prolonged waiting time and decreased availability of suitable organs has increased the necessity for a device to act as a bridge to transplantation to keep patients alive during the waiting period. Ventricular assist devices have become an accepted and proven option for patients whose condition deteriorates to the point that waiting for an available donor organ is a mortal risk. With proper patient selection and timely device insertion, these patients can remain stable until a donor organ becomes available.

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