The Woodlands, TX, United States
The Woodlands, TX, United States

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Weinstein S.,Montefiore Medical Center | Bello R.,Montefiore Medical Center | Pizarro C.,DuPont Company | Fynn-Thompson F.,Boston Childrens Hospital | And 7 more authors.
Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery | Year: 2014

Introduction The frequency and successful use of pediatric ventricular assist devices (VADs) as a bridge to cardiac transplantation have been steadily increasing since 2003, but the experience in patients with complex congenital heart disease has not been well described. Using a large prospectively collected dataset of children supported with the Berlin Heart EXCOR VAD, we have reviewed the experience in children with single ventricular anatomy or physiology (SV), and compared the results with those supported with biventricular circulation (BV) over the same time period. Methods The EXCOR Investigational Device Exemption study database was retrospectively reviewed. VAD implants under the primary cohort and compassionate use cohort between May 2007 and December 2011 were included in this review. Results Twenty-six of 281 patients supported with a VAD were SV. The most common diagnosis was hypoplastic left heart syndrome (15 of 26). Nine patients were supported after neonatal palliative surgery (Blalock-Taussig shunt or Sano), 12 after a superior cavopulmonary connection (SCPC), and 5 after total cavopulmonary connection (TCPC). Two patients received biventricular assist devices, 1 after stage I surgery and 1 after stage II. SV patients were supported for a median time of 10.5 days (range, 1-363 days) versus 39 days (range, 0-435 days) for BV (P =.01). The ability to be bridged to transplant or recovery in SV patients is lower than for BV patients (11 of 26 [42.3%] vs 185 of 255 [72.5%]; P =.001). Three of 5 patients with TCPC were successfully bridged to transplant and were supported with 1 VAD. Seven of 12 patients with SCPC were bridged to transplant, and only 1 of 9 patients supported after a stage I procedure survived. Conclusions The EXCOR Pediatric VAD can provide a bridge to transplant for children with SV anatomy or physiology, albeit less successfully than in children with BV. In this small series, results are better in patients with SCPC and TCPC. VAD support for patients with shunted sources of pulmonary blood flow should be applied with caution. Copyright © 2014 by The American Association for Thoracic Surgery.


Almond C.S.,Harvard University | Morales D.L.,Cincinnati Childrens Hospital | Blackstone E.H.,Cleveland Clinic | Turrentine M.W.,Riley Hospital for Children | And 24 more authors.
Circulation | Year: 2013

BACKGROUND - : Recent data suggest that the Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric ventricular assist device is superior to extracorporeal membrane oxygenation for bridge to heart transplantation. Published data are limited to 1 in 4 children who received the device as part of the US clinical trial. We analyzed outcomes for all US children who received the EXCOR to characterize device outcomes in an unselected cohort and to identify risk factors for mortality to facilitate patient selection. METHODS AND RESULTS - : This multicenter, prospective cohort study involved all children implanted with the Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric ventricular assist device at 47 centers from May 2007 through December 2010. Multiphase nonproportional hazards modeling was used to identify risk factors for early (<2 months) and late mortality. Of 204 children supported with the EXCOR, the median duration of support was 40 days (range, 1-435 days). Survival at 12 months was 75%, including 64% who reached transplantation, 6% who recovered, and 5% who were alive on the device. Multivariable analysis identified lower weight, biventricular assist device support, and elevated bilirubin as risk factors for early mortality and bilirubin extremes and renal dysfunction as risk factors for late mortality. Neurological dysfunction occurred in 29% and was the leading cause of death. CONCLUSIONS - : Use of the Berlin Heart EXCOR has risen dramatically over the past decade. The EXCOR has emerged as a new treatment standard in the United States for pediatric bridge to transplantation. Three-quarters of children survived to transplantation or recovery; an important fraction experienced neurological dysfunction. Smaller patient size, renal dysfunction, hepatic dysfunction, and biventricular assist device use were associated with mortality, whereas extracorporeal membrane oxygenation before implantation and congenital heart disease were not. © 2013 American Heart Association, Inc.


PubMed | Children's Medical Center Dallas, Berlin Heart Inc, Childrens Hospital of Wisconsin, Boston Childrens Hospital and 4 more.
Type: Comparative Study | Journal: The Journal of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery | Year: 2014

The frequency and successful use of pediatric ventricular assist devices (VADs) as a bridge to cardiac transplantation have been steadily increasing since 2003, but the experience in patients with complex congenital heart disease has not been well described. Using a large prospectively collected dataset of children supported with the Berlin Heart EXCOR VAD, we have reviewed the experience in children with single ventricular anatomy or physiology (SV), and compared the results with those supported with biventricular circulation (BV) over the same time period.The EXCOR Investigational Device Exemption study database was retrospectively reviewed. VAD implants under the primary cohort and compassionate use cohort between May 2007 and December 2011 were included in this review.Twenty-six of 281 patients supported with a VAD were SV. The most common diagnosis was hypoplastic left heart syndrome (15 of 26). Nine patients were supported after neonatal palliative surgery (Blalock-Taussig shunt or Sano), 12 after a superior cavopulmonary connection (SCPC), and 5 after total cavopulmonary connection (TCPC). Two patients received biventricular assist devices, 1 after stage I surgery and 1 after stage II. SV patients were supported for a median time of 10.5 days (range, 1-363 days) versus 39 days (range, 0-435 days) for BV (P = .01). The ability to be bridged to transplant or recovery in SV patients is lower than for BV patients (11 of 26 [42.3%] vs 185 of 255 [72.5%]; P = .001). Three of 5 patients with TCPC were successfully bridged to transplant and were supported with 1 VAD. Seven of 12 patients with SCPC were bridged to transplant, and only 1 of 9 patients supported after a stage I procedure survived.The EXCOR Pediatric VAD can provide a bridge to transplant for children with SV anatomy or physiology, albeit less successfully than in children with BV. In this small series, results are better in patients with SCPC and TCPC. VAD support for patients with shunted sources of pulmonary blood flow should be applied with caution.


Morales D.L.S.,Baylor College of Medicine | Almond C.S.D.,Harvard University | Jaquiss R.D.B.,University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences | Rosenthal D.N.,Stanford University | And 18 more authors.
Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation | Year: 2011

Background Beginning in 2000 and accelerating in 2004, the Berlin Heart EXCOR (Berlin Heart Inc Woodlands, TX) became the first pediatric-specific ventricular assist device (VAD) applied throughout North America for children of all sizes. This retrospective study analyzed the initial Berlin Heart EXCOR pediatric experience as a bridge to transplantation. Methods Between June 2000 and May 2007, 97 EXCOR VADs were implanted in North America at 29 different institutions. The analysis is limited to 73 patients (75%) from 17 institutions, for which retrospective data were available. Results Median age and weight at VAD implant were 2.1years (range, 12 days17.8 years) and 11 kg (range, 387.6 kg), respectively. The primary diagnoses were dilated cardiomyopathy in 42 (58%), congenital heart disease in 19 (26%), myocarditis in 7 (10%), and other cardiomyopathies in 5 (7%). Pre-implant clinical condition was critical cardiogenic shock in 38 (52%), progressive decline in 33 (45%), or other in 2 (3%). Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation was used as a bridge to EXCOR in 22 patients (30%). Device selection was left VAD (LVAD) in 42 (57%) and biventricular assist devices (BiVAD) in 31 (43%). The EXCOR bridged 51 patients (70%) to transplant and 5 (7%) to recovery. Mortality on the EXCOR was 23% (n = 17) overall, including 35% (11 of 31) in BiVAD vs 14% (6 of 42) in LVAD patients (p = 0.003). Multivariate analysis showed younger age and BiVAD support were significant risk factors for death while on the EXCOR. Conclusions This limited but large preliminary North American experience with the Berlin Heart EXCOR VAD as a bridge to cardiac transplantation for children of all ages and sizes points to the feasibility of this approach. The prospective investigational device evaluation trial presently underway will further characterize the safety and efficacy of the EXCOR as a bridge to pediatric cardiac transplantation. © 2011 International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation.


Eghtesady P.,Washington University in St. Louis | Almond C.S.D.,Boston Childrens Hospital | Tjossem C.,Berlin Heart Inc | Epstein D.,Washington University in St. Louis | And 5 more authors.
Circulation | Year: 2013

BACKGROUND - Recent data suggest that Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric (EXCOR) ventricular assist device improves waiting list survival for pediatric heart transplant candidates. Little is known about their post-transplant outcomes. The aim of this analysis was to determine whether there was a difference in early survival for children bridged to transplant with EXCOR versus status 1A pediatric heart transplant patients not transplanted with ventricular assist device support. METHODS AND RESULTS - Pediatric heart transplant patients (n=106) bridged to transplantation with EXCOR were compared with a similarly aged cohort (n=1021) within the Organ Procurement and Transplant Network (OPTN) database (both cohorts from May 2007 to December 2010). In the EXCOR group, 12-month post-transplant survival (88.7%) was similar to OPTN patients listed status 1A who were not on ventricular assist device support at transplant (89.3%; P=0.85) and significantly better than 12-month survival in OPTN patients on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation at transplant (60.3%; P<0.001). Rejection (50%) was a significantly (P=0.005) higher cause of 12-month post-transplant mortality in the EXCOR compared with the OPTN group. Death after transplant was also higher in EXCOR patients with congenital heart disease compared with those with cardiomyopathy (26.1% versus 7.2%; P=0.02). Post-transplant survival was similar in EXCOR patients with ≥1 serious adverse event during ventricular assist device support as those without an event during support. CONCLUSIONS - The 12-month post-transplant survival with EXCOR is comparable with overall pediatric heart transplant survival and superior to survival after extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. Neither adverse events during support nor factors associated with mortality during support influence post-transplant survival. Rejection was a significantly greater cause of post-transplant mortality in EXCOR than in OPTN patients. © 2013 American Heart Association, Inc.


Conway J.,University of Toronto | St. Louis J.,University of Minnesota | Morales D.L.S.,Cincinnati Childrens Hospital | Law S.,Seattle Childrens Hospital | And 2 more authors.
JACC: Heart Failure | Year: 2015

Objectives: The goal of this study was to delineate outcomes of children weighing<10 kg supported with the Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric Ventricular Assist Device (EXCOR Pediatric, Berlin Heart Inc., The Woodlands, Texas) and to identify factors that increased the risk of all-cause mortality in this population. Background: Ventricular assist devices have been shown to be an effective bridge to transplant, with improved outcomes compared with use of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. Smaller patients may be at greatest risk for pooroutcomes, but it remains unclear if mortality is uniform across all smaller candidates. Methods: Patients included in the analysis were part of a multicenter prospective cohort study examining the use of the Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric Ventricular Assist Device as a bridge to transplant. All children who received the device between May 9, 2007 and December 31, 2010, and who were enrolled in the sponsor's U.S. regulatory database, were identified and analyzed. Multivariable analysis was performed to determine risk factors associated with mortality. Results: A total of 97 children weighing<10 kg were included (median age 6.2 months; median weight 6.2 kg; median duration of support 26 days). Successful outcomes were achieved in 56.7% of patients. Independent risk factors for mortality in smaller children included pre-existing congenital heart disease (odds ratio: 4.8 [95% confidence interval: 1.5 to 15.0]; p= 0.007) and an elevated bilirubin level (odds ratio: 5.3 [95% confidence interval: 2.0 to 14.3]; p= 0.001). Conclusions: Overall results for children weighing<10 kg were inferior to those of their larger counterparts. Thisoutcome was primarily influenced by congenital heart disease and presence of elevated pre-implant bilirubin levels. These factors should be taken into consideration at decision making because reasonable outcomes can be achieved in aselect population of children weighing<10 kg. © 2015 American College of Cardiology Foundation.


PubMed | University of Minnesota, University of Toronto, Berlin Heart Inc., Cincinnati Childrens Hospital and Seattle Childrens Hospital
Type: Journal Article | Journal: JACC. Heart failure | Year: 2015

The goal of this study was to delineate outcomes of children weighing <10 kg supported with the Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric Ventricular Assist Device (EXCOR Pediatric, Berlin Heart Inc., The Woodlands, Texas) and to identify factors that increased the risk of all-cause mortality in this population.Ventricular assist devices have been shown to be an effective bridge to transplant, with improved outcomes compared with use of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. Smaller patients may be at greatest risk for poor outcomes, but it remains unclear if mortality is uniform across all smaller candidates.Patients included in the analysis were part of a multicenter prospective cohort study examining the use of the Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric Ventricular Assist Device as a bridge to transplant. All children who received the device between May 9, 2007 and December 31, 2010, and who were enrolled in the sponsors U.S. regulatory database, were identified and analyzed. Multivariable analysis was performed to determine risk factors associated with mortality.A total of 97 children weighing <10 kg were included (median age 6.2 months; median weight 6.2 kg; median duration of support 26 days). Successful outcomes were achieved in 56.7% of patients. Independent risk factors for mortality in smaller children included pre-existing congenital heart disease (odds ratio: 4.8 [95% confidence interval: 1.5 to 15.0]; p = 0.007) and an elevated bilirubin level (odds ratio: 5.3 [95% confidence interval: 2.0 to 14.3]; p = 0.001).Overall results for children weighing <10 kg were inferior to those of their larger counterparts. This outcome was primarily influenced by congenital heart disease and presence of elevated pre-implant bilirubin levels. These factors should be taken into consideration at decision making because reasonable outcomes can be achieved in a select population of children weighing <10 kg.


Zafar F.,University of Cincinnati | Jefferies J.L.,University of Cincinnati | Tjossem C.J.,Berlin Heart Inc | Bryant R.,University of Cincinnati | And 7 more authors.
Annals of Thoracic Surgery | Year: 2015

Background Biventricular assist device (BiVAD) support was a strong predictor of early mortality in the Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric investigational device exemption (IDE) study (Assess Safety and Probable Benefit of the EXCOR Pediatric Ventricular Assist Device [VAD]). In adults, it has been identified that 5% to 10% of the VAD population is benefited by BiVAD support over left ventricular assist device (LVAD) support. An analysis of the Berlin Heart study cohort was performed to characterize patients supported with BiVAD, examine risk factors of mortality in this group, and identify subsets of patients in whom BiVAD is associated with survival. Methods All EXCOR Pediatric devices (Berlin Heart, Inc, The Woodlands, TX) placed in North America between May 2007 and December 2010 comprised the study cohort of 204 patients (128 [63%] LVADs and 76 [37%] BiVADs). The following patient cohorts were analyzed to determine the effect of BiVAD use on survival: Interagency Registry for Mechanically Assisted Circulatory Support (INTERMACS) profile 1 patients, patients with abnormal bilirubin levels, patients who received previous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), and patients with a 10-mL pump size. Results There were more patients with BiVADs in INTERMACS profile 1 (63% compared with 46%; p = 0.018). The incidence of major bleeding, neurologic and renal dysfunction, and infection was similar between BiVAD and LVAD groups. White race, abnormal glomerular filtration rate (GFR), sites with experience of less than 5 implantations, and use of 10-mL pumps were predictors of mortality in patients who received BiVADs. BiVADs were not associated with improved survival in any patient cohort; however, they were associated with increased mortality in patients who had undergone ECMO before receiving a VAD. Conclusions BiVAD support was not associated with improved survival in any identified subset of patients. Although not randomized, these results (which were corrected for multiple possible risk factors) suggest that some children supported with BiVADs might have done better with LVADs alone. Further prospective studies will be needed to identify patient cohorts that will be better served with BIVAD support. © 2015 The Society of Thoracic Surgeons.


PubMed | Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Stanford University, Berlin Heart Inc, Vanderbilt University and The Hospital for Sick Children
Type: Comparative Study | Journal: Journal of the American Heart Association | Year: 2015

The Berlin Heart EXCOR() ventricular assist device has been approved for use in the United States as a bridge to heart transplantation in children. We sought to characterize neurological events in children supported with the Berlin Heart EXCOR() device.The multicenter prospective cohort consisted of all 204 children implanted with the Berlin Heart EXCOR() device at 47 centers in North America between May 2007 and December 2010. There were 73 neurological events in 59 patients, with 29% of the cohort experiencing 1 neurological event. Events included 52 strokes in 43 patients (21% of the cohort). The neurological event rate was 0.51 events per 100 patient-days. Many of the neurological events occurred early in the course of support, with 30 events recorded during the first 14 days of support. The mortality rate in participants with at least 1 neurological event was 42% (25 of 59), significantly higher than the 18% mortality rate (26 of 145) for those who did not have a neurological event (P=0.0006). Risk-factor analysis did not identify significant preimplantation predictors of neurological injury.Of children treated with the Berlin Heart EXCOR() device as a bridge to transplant, 29% experienced at least 1 neurological event. The majority of neurological events were ischemic strokes, and many of those occurred early in the course of support. Neurological injury was the leading cause of death after implantation of the Berlin Heart EXCOR() device. Risk stratification for stroke or neurological injury is not possible based on baseline preimplantation characteristics.www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique Identifier: NCT00583661.


PubMed | Berlin Heart Inc, Baylor College of Medicine, Stanford University, University of Cincinnati and 4 more.
Type: Comparative Study | Journal: The Annals of thoracic surgery | Year: 2015

Biventricular assist device (BiVAD) support was a strong predictor of early mortality in the Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric investigational device exemption (IDE) study (Assess Safety and Probable Benefit of the EXCOR Pediatric Ventricular Assist Device [VAD]). In adults, it has been identified that 5% to 10% of the VAD population is benefited by BiVAD support over left ventricular assist device (LVAD) support. An analysis of the Berlin Heart study cohort was performed to characterize patients supported with BiVAD, examine risk factors of mortality in this group, and identify subsets of patients in whom BiVAD is associated with survival.All EXCOR Pediatric devices (Berlin Heart, Inc, The Woodlands, TX) placed in North America between May 2007 and December 2010 comprised the study cohort of 204 patients (128 [63%] LVADs and 76[37%] BiVADs). The following patient cohorts were analyzed to determine the effect of BiVAD use on survival: Interagency Registry for Mechanically Assisted Circulatory Support (INTERMACS) profile 1 patients, patients with abnormal bilirubin levels, patients who received previous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), and patients with a 10-mL pump size.There were more patients with BiVADs in INTERMACS profile 1 (63% compared with 46%; p=0.018). The incidence of major bleeding, neurologic and renal dysfunction, and infection was similar between BiVAD and LVAD groups. White race, abnormal glomerular filtration rate (GFR), sites with experience of less than 5 implantations, and use of 10-mL pumps were predictors of mortality in patients who received BiVADs. BiVADs were not associated with improved survival in any patient cohort; however, they were associated with increased mortality in patients who had undergone ECMO before receiving a VAD.BiVAD support was not associated with improved survival in any identified subset of patients. Although not randomized, these results (which were corrected for multiple possible risk factors) suggest that some children supported with BiVADs might have done better with LVADs alone. Further prospective studies will be needed to identify patient cohorts that will be better served with BIVAD support.

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