Improved regional myocardial blood flow, left ventricular unloading, and infarct salvage using an axial-flow, transvalvular left ventricular assist device. A comparison with intra-aortic balloon counterpulsation and reperfusion alone in a canine infarction model.
BACKGROUND It has been suggested that left ventricular unloading at the time of reperfusion provides superior infarct salvage over reperfusion alone. The purpose of this study was to show that the Hemopump transvalvular axial-flow left ventricular assist device provides superior left ventricular unloading, ischemic zone collateral blood flow, and infarct size reduction compared with intra-aortic balloon counterpulsation and reperfusion alone.
METHODS AND RESULTS Eighteen dogs were instrumented with regional myocardial function sonomicrometers in the ischemic and control zones. The left anterior descending coronary artery just distal to the first diagonal branch was instrumented with a silk snare and Doppler flow probe. Additionally, pressure catheters were placed in the left atrial appendage, left ventricular apex, and ascending aorta for hemodynamic measurements. Regional myocardial blood flow was determined by using 15-microns radioactive microspheres. Measurements were made in the control state, immediately after coronary occlusion, at 1 and 2 hours after coronary occlusion, with reperfusion, and 1 hour after reperfusion. In treated animals, left ventricular assistance was maintained during the entire period of occlusion and reperfusion. The Hemopump was associated with a significant decrease in left ventricular systolic and diastolic pressure, whereas mean arterial pressure was maintained. Intra-aortic balloon counterpulsation resulted in no significant changes in left ventricular systolic pressure and a modest decrease in left ventricular diastolic pressure. Regional unloading as assessed by sonomicrometers was significant in the Hemopump animals and absent in the balloon pump animals. Absolute regional myocardial blood flow in the ischemic zone increased slightly (p = 0.002) in the Hemopump animals and did not change in the balloon pump animals. Infarct size expressed as percentage of the zone at risk was 62.6% in the control animals, 27.22% in the balloon pump animals, and 21.7% in the Hemopump animals.
CONCLUSIONS Mechanical unloading of the ventricle during ischemia and reperfusion appears to result in significant infarct salvage compared with reperfusion alone. The Hemopump appears to provide superior left ventricular systolic and diastolic unloading compared with intra-aortic counterpulsation in a canine model.
- Copyright © 1992 by American Heart Association