Oklahoma Heart Institute is the first hospital in northeastern Oklahoma to offer the Medtronic HeartWare ™ HVAD ™ System as a destination therapy option for patients suffering from advanced heart failure who are not candidates for a heart transplant. The HVAD System is also available as a bridge to heart transplant in eligible patients. The HVAD System is a ventricular assist device (VAD) that helps the heart pump and increases the amount of blood that circulates through the body.

The HVAD System features the world’s smallest, commercially available, centrifugal flow pump. Weighing only 160 grams, the HVAD System’s continuous flow pump is 30 percent thinner and has 38 percent less volume than other centrifugal-flow devices.

In the United States, more than 6 million Americans are living with heart failure, and more than 250,000 patients have advanced heart failure and are ineligible for a heart transplant because of co-morbidities or health histories. VAD therapy has been demonstrated to extend life, augment cardiac function and improve quality of life for patients who may no longer benefit from earlier stage treatment options.

How the HVAD System Works

The HVAD System consists of the pump; an external controller, which is a small computer that monitors the pump; a cable that connects the pump to the controller; and power sources that run the pump and controller. The HVAD Pump fits in the area around the heart known as the pericardial space. It is connected directly to the heart at the bottom of the left ventricle. There it draws oxygen-rich blood through the pump and pushes it into the aorta where it flows to the rest of the body. The system can pump enough blood every minute to decrease heart failure symptoms. A physician programs the system to deliver the proper amount of flow for the body’s needs.

Courtesy of Medtronic