Berlin Heart has especially developed the EXCOR® Pediatric VAD for use in children, small children, and even infants. Thanks to the variety of blood pumps and cannulae, we can supply patients of different sizes in a more customized manner.Pediatric VAD for use in children, small children, and even infants. Thanks to the variety of blood pumps and cannulae, we can supply patients of different sizes in a more customized manner.
The EXCOR® is implanted using standardized surgical techniques and a cardiopulmonary bypass machine. The CPB machine takes over the circulation and oxygenation of the blood while the EXCOR® cannulae are connected to the heart and blood vessels. After the cannulae have been tunneled through the skin, the surgeon connects the cannulae to the EXCOR® blood pump. The VAD team adjusts the pump rate and the pump pressures via the Ikus stationary driving unit. This ensures an optimal blood pump function. At the same time, the patient is gradually weaned from the CPB machine and the EXCOR® VAD takes over the total pump output.
After implantation, the patient receives care in the intensive care unit. Experienced cardiologists care for the young patients and regularly conduct routine lab tests and ultrasound examinations. Depending on their initial condition, it may take a few weeks for the patient to recover. Physicians regularly check the transcutaneous exit sites of the cannulae, clean them, and place sterile wound dressings in order to promote a fast healing process. The function of the ventricular assist device is continuously monitored. In order to avoid the formation of thrombi, the young patient takes anticoagulants from that point on.
On the pediatric ward the parents of young patients can – depending on the individual circumstances – take on an active role and help care for their children. The transcutaneous (skin-penetrating) exit sites of the cannulae are regularly cleaned and dressed in sterile bandages to promote a fast healing process. If the child is healthy enough, it can play in the playroom and even receive school instruction at the hospital.
The VAD team and the nurses will train the patient's caregivers on the use of the EXCOR® system, monitoring of the pump and the Ikus driving unit. The EXCOR® system settings are selected so that it can supply the young patient with an adequate total pump output. In this manner, rehabilitation and physiotherapy can already start, in theory, prior to the heart transplantation.
In order to accelerate the recovery process, movement is also important. This applies especially to babies and toddlers, who learn to crawl and walk in the hospital. We place great value on our small patients being supported in their development, even during EXCOR® therapy.
If certain conditions are fulfilled, young patients can use the Excor® mobil driving system. The Excor® mobil allows patients to return to normal everyday life more quickly. Before discharge, the VAD team explains to patients and their families such things as:
Note: The therapy descriptions presented here are only illustrative and may vary from patient to patient. If you have questions regarding your individual condition and therapy options, please talk to your treating physician.
The access to some or all shown products may be restricted by country-specific regulatory approvals. The use of EXCOR® VAD for adults, RVAD-support, Excor mobil and EXCOR® Active is not FDA-approved.