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Ventricular assist devices and non-cardiac surgery.

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Published:19th Dec 2015
Author: Roberts SM, Hovord DG, Kodavatiganti R, Sathishkumar S.
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Ref.:BMC Anesthesiol. 2015 Dec 19;15:185.

The use of ventricular assist devices has expanded significantly since their approval by the Food and Drug Administration in the United States in 1994. In addition to this, the prevalence of heart failure continues to increase. We aim to provide an overview of perioperative considerations and management of these patients for non-cardiac surgery. We performed a Medline search for the words "ventricular assist device," "Heartmate" and "HeartWare" to gain an overview of the literature surrounding these devices, and chose studies with relevance to the stated aims of this review. Patients with ventricular assist devices are presenting more frequently for surgery not related to their cardiac pathology. As the mechanically supported population grows, general anesthesiologists will be faced with managing these patients, possibly outside of the tertiary care setting. The unique challenges of this patient population can best be addressed by a thorough understanding of ventricular assist device physiology and a multidisciplinary approach to care.


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