Impact of Hemodynamic Ramp Test-Guided HVAD Speed and Medication Adjustments on Clinical Outcomes. Circulation. Heart failure Uriel, N., Burkhoff, D., Rich, J. D., Drakos, S. G., Teuteberg, J. J., Imamura, T., Rodgers, D., Raikhelkar, J., Vorovich, E. E., Selzman, C. H., Kim, G., Sayer, G. 2019; 12 (4): e006067


BACKGROUND: Hemodynamic ramp (HR) tests can guide the optimization of left ventricular assist device (LVAD) speed and direct medical therapy. We investigated the effects of HR-guided LVAD management.METHODS AND RESULTS: This prospective, multicenter, randomized, pilot study compared outcomes in LVAD patients using an HR-guided (HR group) versus a standard transthoracic echocardiography-guided (control group) management strategy. Patients were enrolled and randomized 1 to 3 months post-HVAD implantation and followed for 6 months. Twenty-two patients (57±10 years, 73% male) were randomized to the HR group and 19 patients (51±13 years, 63% male) to the control group. HR group patients had double the number of LVAD speed changes (1.68 versus 0.84 changes/patient, P=0.09 with an incidence rate ratio 2.0, 95% CI, 0.9-4.7) with twice the magnitude of rotations per minute changes (130 versus 60 rotations per minute/patient, P=0.004) during the study. The HR group also had 2-fold greater heart failure medication changes (4.32 versus 2.53 changes/patient, P=0.072, incidence rate ratio 1.7 with 95% CI, 0.8-3.5) predominantly because of changes in diuretic dose (40 versus 0 mg/patient, P<0.001). The HR group had numerically but not statistically higher event-free survival (62% versus 46%, P=0.087; hazard ratio, 0.46 with 95% CI, 0.2-1.2), with numerically but not statistically lower events per patient-year ( P=0.084). There were no significant differences in the 6-minute walk or Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire tests at 6 months.CONCLUSIONS: In this randomized pilot study of LVAD patient management we demonstrated the feasibility of standardized HR testing at multiple institutions and that a strategy guided by hemodynamics was associated with more LVAD speed and medication adjustments and a nonsignificant reduction in adverse events. A pivotal study to demonstrate the clinical benefit of HR testing is warranted.CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION: URL: . Unique identifier: NCT03021239.

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