Use of Mechanical Circulatory Support in Isolated Right Heart Failure: A Bridge to Transplantation

Ann Thorac Surg. 2017 Aug;104(2):e155-e156. doi: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2017.02.058.


Acute myocarditis may lead to left ventricular dysfunction and subsequent need for cardiac transplantation. We describe a 15-month-old child who presented with right heart failure of unclear cause. Echocardiography showed normal left ventricular function; however, right ventricular function was markedly reduced. The patient required extracorporeal membrane oxygenation followed by placement of a right-sided Berlin EXCOR ventricular assist device. There was little recovery, and the child underwent cardiac transplantation. Subsequent pathologic examination revealed lymphocytic myocarditis. We believe this is the first use of an isolated right ventricular assist device as a bridge to heart transplantation.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Echocardiography
  • Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation / methods*
  • Heart Failure / diagnosis
  • Heart Failure / surgery*
  • Heart Transplantation*
  • Heart-Assist Devices*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male