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China's first Extra-VAD in clinical use at Union Hospital

Jul 28, 2021

The first Extra-VAD (ventricular assist device) in China has been in clinical use at the Union Hospital affiliated to Tongji Medical College of HUST, allowing a 31-year-old patient with heart failure to be revived.

Ms. Cheng, from Guangdong, came to Union Hospital for further treatment after the failure of mitral valve replacement and was diagnosed to be in urgent need of heart transplantation. After much deliberation, the team headed by Dong Nianguo, director of the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, decided to use Extra-VAD to help the patient through the tough situation caused by the absence of the matching donor heart combined with her rapid disease progress.  

On June 25, the surgery was successfully performed just in 1 hour and 15 minutes. Twelve days later, Ms. Cheng received her matching donor heart. After the surgery, she recovered well and now has been transferred to a general ward.

Extra-VAD, jointly developed by Union Hospital and Suzhou MagAssist Medical Technology Co., Ltd., is of great significance to heart failure patients or those waiting for a donor heart for heart transplantation. Like a super-powered "motor", it allows exhausted ventricles to rest; helping to maintain general blood circulation of patients with acute heart failure. "Extra-VAD enables patients to suffer from less trauma and recover quickly. It offers a good transition for heart transplantation." Director Dong said. Previously, Extra-VAD was mostly imported, and thus expensive. The outstanding innovation of Union Hospital, with its partner, has dramatically reduced its cost and made it accessible for more patients, allowing them to benefit from the international cutting-edge technology.

Extra-VAD is also known to be used in other high-risk patients with severe heart diseases and has shown to increase the survival rate of such patients by 50%.

Written by: Shi Can

Edited by: He Rong, Scott, Peng Yumeng

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