Brandon Schmidt has been a patient at the Cardiovascular Center at the University of Uath since May 13. Brandon recently underwent surgery for a Left Ventricular Assist Device implanted as a trial for studies. If all goes well he may be device free in six months to a year. There is a 25% success rate and Brandon’s determined to be part of that 25%. His lead doctors felt very strongly that Brandon would be a good candidate for this study “Bridge to Recovery” vs “Bridge to Transplant” or “Bridge to Destination” (which is patients that would use the LVAD and plan on using it for the rest of their life. He is up walking and eating well.
The LVAD that he had implanted in his heart is functioning well. Life with an LVAD is not a lot of fun, and doesn’t mean he won’t need a transplant in a year or five years or ten years, but it does mean he can eventually leave the hospital, and there is a chance that he could be weaned off the LVAD and have it removed if his heart recovers enough.
Left Ventricular Assist Device is a mechanical pump that is implanted inside a person’s chest to help a weakened heart pump blood throughout the body. Unlike a total artificial heart, the LVAD doesn’t replace the heart; it just helps it to do its job. This can mean the difference between life and death for a person whose heart needs a rest after open-heart surgery, or for patients waiting for a heart transplant , called “Bridge to Transplant” LVADs may also be used as “destination therapy.’, which is an alternative to transplant. The LVAD is surgically implanted just below the heart. One end is attached to the left ventricle, that’s the chamber of the heart that pumps blood out of the lungs and into the body The other end is attached to the aorta, the body’s main artery.