Control strategy for rotary blood pumps

Artif Organs. 2001 May;25(5):366-70. doi: 10.1046/j.1525-1594.2001.025005366.x.


The control strategy for ventricular support with a centrifugal blood pump was examined in this study. The control parameter was the pump rpm that determines pump flow. Optimum control of pump rpm that reflects the body's demand is important for long-term, effective, and safe circulatory support. Moreover, continuous, reliable monitoring of ventricular function will help successfully wean the patients from the ventricular assist device (VAD). The control strategy in this study includes determination of the target pump rpm that can provide the flow required by the body, fine-rpm-tuning to minimize deleterious effects such as suction in the ventricle, and assessment of ventricular function for successful weaning from VADs. To determine the target pump rpm, we proposed to use the relation between the native heart rate and cardiac output, and the relation between the pump rpm and centrifugal pump output. For fine-tuning of the pump rpm, the motor current waveform was used. We computed the power spectral density of the motor current waveform and calculated the ratio of the fundamental to the higher order components. When this ratio was larger than approximately 0.2, we assumed there would be a suction effect in the ventricle. As for assessment of ventricular function, we used the amplitude of the motor current waveform. The control system implemented using a DSP functioned properly in the mock circulatory loop as well as in acute animal experiments. The motor current also showed a good correlation with the ventricular pressure in acute animal experiments.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cardiac Output
  • Electrocardiography
  • Goats
  • Heart Rate
  • Heart-Assist Devices*
  • Monitoring, Physiologic
  • Ventricular Function, Left*
  • Ventricular Pressure