First human use of the Hemopump, a catheter-mounted ventricular assist device

O. H. Frazier, Richard K. Wampler, J. Michael Duncan, Wayne E. Dear, Michael P. Macris, Steven M. Parnis, John M. Fuqua

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

92 Scopus citations


The Hemopump, a catheter-mounted, temporary ventricular assist device, consists of an external electromechanical drive console and a disposable, intraarterial axialflow pump (21F). Power is transmitted percutaneously to the pump by a flexible drive shaft within the catheter. The device is positioned in the left ventricle by way of the femoral artery approach or through the ascending aorta. Blood is drawn from the left ventricle through the transvalvular inlet cannula and pumped into the aorta. As of December 1988, the Hemopump had successfully supported the circulation of 7 patients (5 men, 2 women) ranging in age from 44 to 72 years (mean age, 59 years) and suffering from cardiogenic shock (cardiac index <2.0 L/min/m2). Indications for use included failure to be weaned from cardiopulmonary bypass in 4 patients, acute myocardial infarction in 1, severe cardiac allograft rejection in 1, and donor heart failure in 1. Duration of support ranged from 26 to 113 hours (mean, 66 hours). Although 5 patients demonstrated transient hemolysis, none experienced infection, thrombosis, or vascular injury. Hemodynamic variables improved in all patients during support by the device. As of December 1988, 5 of the 7 patients were alive more than 30 days after support had been discontinued, and 3 of these patients were discharged from the hospital. On the basis of our initial clinical results, the Hemopump, which does not require a major surgical procedure for insertion, provides effective, temporary circulatory support in patients with potentially reversible cardiac failure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-304
Number of pages6
JournalThe Annals of thoracic surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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