Overall quality of life improves to similar levels after mechanical circulatory support regardless of severity of heart failure before implantation

Kathleen L. Grady*, David Naftel, Lynne Stevenson, Mary Amanda Dew, Gerdi Weidner, Francis D. Pagani, James K. Kirklin, Susan Myers, Timothy Baldwin, James Young

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


Background The severity of pre-implantation heart failure may affect post-implantation health-related quality of life (HRQOL). The purpose of our study was to examine differences in HRQOL from before mechanical circulatory support (MCS) through 1 year after surgery by Interagency Registry for Mechanically Assisted Circulatory Support (INTERMACS) patient profiles. Methods Data from 1,559 adults with advanced heart failure who received primary continuous-flow pumps between June 23, 2006, and March 31, 2010, and were enrolled in INTERMACS were analyzed. HRQOL data were collected using the EQ-5D-3L survey before implantation and at 3, 6, and 12 months after implantation. Statistical analyses included chi-square and t-tests, using all available data for each time period. Paired t-tests and sensitivity analyses were also conducted. Results HRQOL was poor before MCS implantation among patients with INTERMACS profiles 1 to 7 and significantly improved after MCS implantation for all profiles. Stratified by INTERMACS profile, problems within each of the 5 dimensions of HRQOL (i.e., mobility, self-care, usual activities, pain, and anxiety/depression) generally decreased from before to after implantation. By 6 months after implantation, patients with all INTERMACS profiles reported similar frequencies of problems for all HRQOL dimensions. Paired t-tests and sensitivity analyses supported almost all of our findings. Conclusions HRQOL is poor among advanced heart failure patients with INTERMACS profiles 1 to 7 before MCS implantation and improves to similar levels for patients who remained on MCS 1 year after surgery. Patients have problems in HRQOL dimensions before and after MCS; however, the frequency of reporting problems decreases for all dimensions within most profiles across time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)412-421
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Heart and Lung Transplantation
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • continuous-flow pump
  • health-related quality of life
  • heart failure
  • mechanical circulatory support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Transplantation


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