The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Intermacs 2019 Annual Report: The Changing Landscape of Devices and Indications

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

The Annals of thoracic surgery


BACKGROUND: The field of mechanical circulatory support has been impacted by the approval of new continuous-flow left ventricular assist devices (LVADs) and changes to the United States heart allocation system.

METHODS: Primary isolated continuous-flow LVAD implants in The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Intermacs registry from January 2014 through September 2019 were evaluated. Survival and freedom from major adverse events were compared between axial-flow, centrifugal-flow with hybrid levitation (CF-HL), and centrifugal-flow with full magnetic levitation (CF-FML) devices.

RESULTS: Of 2603 devices implanted in 2014, 1824 (70.1%) were axial flow and 1213 (46.6%) were destination therapy (DT); through September 2019, 1752 devices were implanted, but only 37 (2.1%) were axial flow and 1230 (70.2%) were DT. Implants were performed in 13,016 patients between 2014 and 2018. Patients receiving implants in 2017-2018 compared with 2014-2016 were more likely to be at Intermacs profile 1 (17.1% vs 14.3%, P < .001) and to have preimplant temporary mechanical circulatory support (34.8% vs 29.3%, P < .001). Overall survival and freedom from major adverse events were higher with CF-FML devices. In multivariable analysis of survival between CF-HL and CF-FML, device type was not a significant early hazard, but the use of CF-HL devices had a late hazard ratio for death of 3.01 (P < .001).

CONCLUSIONS: Over the past 5 years, centrifugal-flow LVADs have become the dominant technology and DT the most common implant strategy. While outcomes with CF-FML devices are promising, comparisons with other devices from nonrandomized registry studies should be made with caution.

PubMed ID






First Page


Last Page