Plasmapheresis in Patients With Heparin-induced Thrombocytopenia Requiring Ventricular Assist Device

Ann Thorac Surg. 2020 Jun;109(6):e439-e440. doi: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2019.09.056. Epub 2019 Nov 9.


Anticoagulation with unfractionated heparin is vital to reduce the risk of thromboembolic events during cardiopulmonary bypass and left ventricular assist device placement. However patients with heparin-induced thrombocytopenia are at risk of developing immune-mediated thrombotic events. We describe 2 patients with heparin-induced thrombocytopenia confirmed via serotonin release assay who were successfully treated with plasmapheresis exchange before left ventricular assist device placement.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Anticoagulants / adverse effects
  • Heart-Assist Devices*
  • Heparin / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Plasmapheresis / methods*
  • Thrombocytopenia / chemically induced*
  • Thrombocytopenia / complications
  • Thrombosis / etiology
  • Thrombosis / therapy*


  • Anticoagulants
  • Heparin