Living life on an Artificial Heart

The artificial heart (LVAD) was implanted in patients facing end-stage heart failure. The device, which is supposedly considered a “bridge to a transplant”, proved to be “destination therapy” Patients facing heart failure and certain death in the absence of an immediate heart transplant are living
normal lives. These patients are those who don’t have a pulse, heartbeat or blood pressure, yet they are
able to do everything that a healthy person can, as their blood flow has been fully restored. The device
left ventricular assist devices(LVAD) has helped in the longevity of life for those who were facing imminent
heart failure.
According to Dr. Kewal Krishan, Director, Heart Transplant & Ventricular Assist Devices, Dept. of
Cardiovascular Surgery, Max  “LVAD is a device that adds 13 to 15 years to the life of people facing
imminent heart failure. It boosts functions of the heart and is used either as a temporary measure till a
heart transplant can be conducted, or as a destination therapy where the patient lives with the device
permanently as they are unfit for a heart transplant. LVAD enables patients to live a normal life even
after end-stage heart failure.”
 “We have conducted over a dozen LVAD implants till now at Max Hospital, Saket, ranging from a seven
year-old girl to an 81-year-old female patient. Four of those patients are living a normal life even five
years after implant– they are the first and only LVAD recipients in India to have successfully survived
beyond five years. Others are also doing well and hopefully will complete many more years on device.
LVAD is gradually emerging as a good alternative to a heart transplant.” He Adds

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