Heart transplants for MCS patients

Why we measure it: Since 2006, approximately 25% of our heart transplant patients were supported during their waiting period by some form of mechanical circulatory support (MCS). The use of ventricular assist devices (VAD), a form of mechanical circulatory support, are used to bridge patients safely to heart transplantation or are used give their own heart more time to recover. These devices allow us to support our most critical patients, making them feel better and more functional while waiting for a heart.


What this means: The graph shows the number of heart transplant cases where patients were on mechanical circulatory support (MCS) prior to transplant and those patients who were not on MCS. The data spans per year from 2002 through 2012.

About the data: The data source comes from Steven Zangwill, MD, Children's Hospital of Wisconsin.

Related dimensions of care:

imgEfficient imgEquitable

How we provide the best care

  • Children supported with a VAD are able to perform many normal activities. They also require less IV medicines for support and can establish a normal diet and appetite. In some cases, a patient can leave the hospital and even attend school while waiting for their heart transplant.
  • Heart transplant patients have access to pediatric physical and occupational therapy, speech and rehabilitation specialists to enhance and speed recovery. A dedicated pediatric psychologist, pharmacist, social worker and Child Life specialist consistently are involved to help children and families through the transplant process to ease the transition back to school and home.