Mechanical Circulatory Support
The UCSF Mechanical Circulatory Support (MCS) Program cares for patients with advanced heart failure using various types of mechanical heart pumps. These pumps – called left ventricular assist devices, or LVADs – can improve quality of life for patients who are awaiting heart transplant, as well as those with no remaining options aside from end-of-life care. They may also be used to allow a failing heart to rest until other treatment options become viable.
When your heart failure symptoms become overwhelming and medications don't seem to be helping any longer, it is time to discuss other options with your cardiologist. Your doctor will talk to you about mechanical circulatory support therapy and can make a referral to our center to meet with the MCS cardiologist or surgeon. A referral is required to make an appointment with our program.
A referral to a different doctor does not mean that you can no longer be seen by your own cardiologist; he or she will follow up with you after your surgery, if it is determined that LVAD therapy is right for you.
If you haven't already done so, you will need to undergo several tests, which the MCS physicians will review to determine whether you are a good candidate for LVAD therapy. These tests include echocardiogram, heart catheterization and pulmonary function tests. You may need additional testing after you have seen the MCS physicians.
After the team has reviewed all your test results, your MCS physician will contact you to discuss whether LVAD is the best treatment for your heart failure.
Doctor referral required
What to Expect: Getting a VAD Implanted
At UCSF, surgeons use minimally invasive techniques to implant your ventricular assist device (VAD). Learn more here.
FAQ: Living with a Ventricular Assist Device (VAD)
Find frequently asked questions regarding living with a Ventricular Assist Device (VAD) including, taking medication, daily routines, exercise and more.
Pulmonary Hypertension Association Registry
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Long-term Safety of Tafamidis in Subjects With Transthyretin Cardiomyopathy
Open label study to evaluate tafamidis for the treatment of transthyretin cardiomyopathy
Early Feasibility Study of the AccuCinch® Ventricular Repair System in Patients With Prior Mitr...
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An Early Feasibility Evaluation of the AccuCinch® Ventricular Repair System in Patients With He...
This is a non-randomized, prospective, multi-center Early Feasibility Study to evaluate the AccuCinch® Ventricular Repair System in Patients with Heart Failure and Reduced Ejection Fraction (HFrEF).
Prospective Assessment of Premature Ventricular Contractions Suppression in Cardiomyopathy(PAPS...
Premature ventricular contractions (PVCs) coexist in patients with heart failure (HF) and LV dysfunction. Frequent PVCs have shown to induce a reversible cardiomyopathy (PVC-CM). This clinical pilot study will enro...
TReatment of Pulmonary Hypertension Group II Study
The objective of this study is to assess the safety and initial effectiveness of the TIVUS™ System when used for pulmonary artery denervation in group II PH patients through change in clinical parameters including he...
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lower rate of most complications
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What to Bring
- Photo I.D.
- Health insurance card
- Insurance authorization, if required
- Doctor's referral, if required
- Recent test results related to your condition
- List of your medications, including dosages, plus any you're allergic to
- List of questions you may have
- Device or paper for taking notes
Advanced Heart Failure Evaluation and Therapies Program
400 Parnassus Ave., Fifth Floor
San Francisco, CA 94143
Heart Transplant Program
400 Parnassus Ave., Fifth Floor
San Francisco, CA 94143
Our research initiatives
UCSF Heart Failure and Pulmonary Hypertension Research
The UCSF Division of Cardiology conducts research aimed at improving the understanding and treatment of pulmonary hypertension and heart failure.