Caring for Patients With Ventricular Assist Devices: A Mini-Review of the Literature

ÖZDEMİR KÖKEN Z., Sezer R. E., Kervan U.

TRANSPLANTATION PROCEEDINGS, vol.51, no.7, pp.2492-2494, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 51 Issue: 7
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2019.03.046
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.2492-2494
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Heart transplantation, one of the treatment options for end-stage heart failure, is still regarded as the gold standard treatment to improve quality and length of life. However, the rapid increase in the number of patients waiting for heart transplantation and the inadequate number of donors makes heart transplantation a less feasible option and increases the need for ventricular assist devices as an alternative. The success of ventricular assist device implantation requires the collaboration of a multidisciplinary team consisting of cardiac surgeons, nurses, ventricular assist device coordinators, cardiologist, cardiac anesthesia specialists, perfusionists, and physiotherapists. Nurses working in different fields such as intensive care units, operating rooms, outpatient clinics, and ventricular assist device coordination units have important responsibilities in multidisciplinary teams. In this study, national and international studies on the responsibilities of nurses for the management and care of ventricular assist devices were reviewed. Nurses undertake many tasks, especially in the postoperative care of patients and in preparing them for discharge. Important responsibilities of nurses in the care of patients with ventricular assist devices include monitoring complications, managing equipment and emergency situations, establishing dressing change protocols, organizing daily life activities, determining rehabilitation needs, ensuring use of medicines, and providing comprehensive discharge education. Organizational and communication skills of nurses working with multidisciplinary teams are very important for the success of the ventricular assist device implantation process.