Mechanical circulatory support is used to sustain the lives of patients awaiting cardiac transplantation who would otherwise die before a donor organ became available. Currently available ventricular assist devices used for mechanical circulatory support, risk factors and complications associated with use of these devices, and selection of candidates for treatment with mechanical support as a bridge to cardiac transplantation are reviewed. The importance of early insertion of the devices before end-organ dysfunction occurs is examined.

You do not currently have access to this content.