Ventricular Assist Device Program Types of VADs

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Types of VADs

Seton Has several types of VAD’s available. If you have advanced heart failure and it is recommended that this is the best treatment for you or a loved one, the surgeon will determine which device would be best for you to improve your quality of life.  VADs that are commonly used here at Seton Medical Center include the Heartmate XVE® , the Thoratec® PVAD, the Heartmate II, and Centrimag manufactured by Thoratec Laboratories, Inc.;  the Abiomed® BVS 5000, and the Abiomed® AB5000 manufactured by Abiomed. More information on these companies and their products can be obtained at and

Heartmate XVE

  • The Heartmate® is a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) that assists or completely takes over the work of the left ventricle. The Heartmate has two tubes connected to an electronic pump, an electronic controller and an energy supply. One tube goes into the left ventricle, pulling blood from the ventricle into the pump. The pump then sends blood into the aorta, the large blood vessel, leaving the ventricle and effectively bypassing the weakened ventricle. The patient will be required to take aspirin daily and will have the option to be considered a home candidate.
  • Currently this is the only FDA approved device for Destination Therapy


Thoratec PVAD

The Thoratec® PVAD is a versatile unit in that it can provide support to the left side of the heart (LVAD), the right side of the heart (RVAD) or both sides (BIVAD) Due to this device being external it can be used to help a wide range of patients as thoracic size plays a part in fitting a patient for the appropriate device. As stated on the Thoratec website, ”With more than 20 years of clinical use, the Thoratec PVAD (Paracorporeal Ventricular Assist Device) provides acute-to-intermediate support in patients of virtually any size.* The PVAD has been proven in more than 240 centers and 4,000 patients worldwide”. Thoratec®  With training about the device provided by a Seton VAD. Coordinator, person on this device can live a relatively normal life outside the hospital until time of heart transplantation is completed.


Abiomed BVS 5000

  • The Abiomed®  BVS5000 is used for temporary left, right or biventricular support in patients with potentially reversible Heart Failure. This air-driven pump is outside the body and powered by electricity. It may be used as a bridge to another device or as a bridge to heart transplantation.
  • As stated on the Abiomed website,”The BVS 5000 was the first extracorporeal, or outside the body, ventricular assist device on the market and is still the most widely used bridge to recovery device with systems located in more than 700 institutions throughout the world. The BVS 5000 has supported thousands of patients ranging from 8 to 84 years old in over 500 medical centers. It was the first FDA-approved device for the support of all patients with reversible heart failure.”  Abiomed® .


Abiomed AB 5000

  • The Abiomed®  AB5000 is used for recovery and/ or Bridge to Transplant. This device is used for left, right or biventricular support in patients with Heart Failure. This air-driven pump is outside the body and powered by electricity. As stated on the Abiomed website,” The AB5000 Console is designed to allow patients to leave their hospital rooms and walk within the hospital and on hospital grounds. Multiple studies have shown that patient ambulation, or walking, greatly assists the recovery process”. Abiomed®   Patients are mobile on this device and with the help of the Voyager Clinical trial, will soon be able to live outside the hospital on this device until they receive their heart transplant.


Heartmate II

  • The HeartMate II is Thoratec's  non-pulsatile axial flow  left ventricular assist device. This device is small and durable. It provides a constant flow of blood from the heart to the body. This device has been designed to dramatically improve survival and the patient’s quality of life. The patient once stable can be discharged from the hospital and live a relatively normal life outside the hospital. This device runs off of batteries and a/c power.


Rescue Devices

  • Rescue devices are commonly called “bridge to decision”. This is a way of helping a patient to survive until a decision/assessment is made if the patient’s own heart will recover or will they need a heart transplant. Seton uses and accepts BVS 5000, Impella and Centrimag.
  • Patients can be ground or air transported on these devices. A flight trained VAD Coordinator is on call 24 hours a day for transport and support of these devices when needed. The coordinator can be reached by calling 512-681-0500.


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