Ventricular Assist Devices
A ventricular assist device (VAD) is an electromechanical device for assisting cardiac circulation, which is used either to partially or to completely replace the function of a failing heart. The function of VADs is different from that of artificial cardiac pacemakers; some are for short-term use, typically for patients recovering from myocardial infarction (heart attack) and for patients recovering from cardiac surgery; some are for long-term use (months to years to perpetuity), typically for patients suffering from advanced heart failure.
The incidence of valvular heart diseases (VHD) in aging populations is increasing dramatically and is becoming a serious health burden. Although the majority of patients are treated effectively by various surgical or interventional methods, there is a large need for improving our understanding of disease mechanisms (knowledge gain) and precision treatment planning (clinical benefit), also with regard to significant gender differences prevalent in VHD.