Left ventricular assist device (LVAD) deactivation may be considered in cases of left ventricular recovery, pump thrombosis, infection, and end-of-life palliation. Surgical pump explantation remains the principal method, but percutaneous deactivation presents a safe and effective alternative. We have developed a formal program for percutaneous LVAD deactivation within our advanced heart failure program including patient selection criteria, preprocedure testing, a procedural algorithm, and a postprocedure care plan. Patient selection for percutaneous LVAD deactivation required review by an interdisciplinary heart transplant team including reason for deactivation, cardiac function, surgical risk, and patient preference. All candidates underwent LVAD ramp studies with both transthoracic echocardiography and right heart catheterization assessment. Deactivation was performed under general anesthesia with transesophageal echocardiography guidance. Three Amplatzer Vascular Plug IIs (Abbott, St. Paul, MN) were deployed in the LVAD outflow cannula with the proximal edge of the third plug aligned with the aortic anastomosis of the graft as guided by angiography and 3-dimensional transesophageal echocardiography. In a separate procedure, the LVAD drive line was transected below the skin, which was closed surgically over the driveline stump. Anticoagulation was continued for at least 3 months. Since initiation in January 2017, our program has performed 7 percutaneous LVAD deactivation procedures. All procedures have been successful, 5 of the patients remain medically managed, and 2 have proceeded to heart transplant. Percutaneous LVAD deactivation provides an alternative to surgical explantation. A percutaneous LVAD deactivation program is an important component of an advanced heart failure program.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)467-472
Number of pages6
JournalSeminars in Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Percutaneous Deactivation of Left Ventricular Assist Devices'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this