Bridge to Weight Loss: A Case Series

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ASAIO journal


Durable left ventricular assist devices (LVADs) are a well-established therapeutic option for patients with advanced heart failure. These devices are often used to "bridge" patients to an orthotopic heart transplantation (HT). Unfortunately, many patients on LVAD support with a body mass index (BMI) above a certain value are not eligible for HT due a lack of suitable donors and the association between obesity and poor outcomes after HT. This case series describes three individuals on LVAD support who were able to successfully lose enough weight to qualify to be listed for an HT. We highlight a systematic, multidisciplinary approach to implementing guideline-driven weight loss strategies, including some aggressive methods (ie, meal replacements, weight loss medications, and bariatric surgery). In addition to describing the weight loss outcomes, we also discuss barriers and medical challenges during weight loss that are unique to this population.

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ePub ahead of print