Background: Ventricular assist devices (VADs) are used to bridge heart failure patients to transplantation, to allow their own hearts to recover, or as permanent ("destination") therapy. To date, the use of VADs has been limited to late-stage heart failure patients because of the associated device risks. In 2008, a National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) working group met to evaluate the treatment of heart failure using VADs and to advise the institute on how therapy for heart failure may be best advanced by clinical trials involving the devices. Methods and Results: Recognizing the improvements in VAD technology and in patient care and selection over the past decade, the working group recommended that a trial be performed to assess the use of chronic VAD therapy in patients who are less ill than those currently eligible for destination therapy. The hypothesis proposed for the trial is that VAD therapy may improve both survival and quality of life in moderately advanced heart failure patients who are neither inotrope-dependent nor exercise-intolerant and have not yet developed serious consequences such as malnourishment, end-organ damage, and immobility. Conclusion: Based on the group's recommendations, NHLBI issued an RFP in 2009 for the REVIVE-IT Pilot Trail, which will serve to test the hypothesis and inform the pivotal trial.
- Mechanical circulatory support
- destination therapy
- functional impairment
- quality of life