Clinical characteristics and long-term outcomes in patients with peripartum cardiomyopathy (PPCM) receiving left ventricular assist devices (LVAD)

Dominik Berliner*, Tong Li, Silvia Mariani, Righab Hamdan, Jasmin Hanke, Tobias König, Tobias Jonathan Pfeffer, Valeska Abou-Moulig, Günes Dogan, Denise Hilfiker-Kleiner, Axel Haverich, Johann Bauersachs, Jan D Schmitto

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Peripartum cardiomyopathy (PPCM) is a rare cause of heart failure (HF), presenting with left ventricular (LV) systolic dysfunction either at the end of pregnancy or in the months following delivery. In rare cases, PPCM leads to severe impairment of LV function, refractory cardiogenic shock or advanced HF. LV assist devices (LVAD) have been shown to be a feasible treatment option in advanced HF. However, little is known about long-term outcomes and prognosis of PPCM patients undergoing LVAD implantation. Methods: A retrospective analysis of data from PPCM patients undergoing LVAD implantation in two tertiary centers with respect to long-term outcomes was performed. Results: Twelve patients of median age 30 (18–39) years were included. Eight patients were experiencing cardiogenic shock (INTERMACS 1) at implantation. Seven patients were implanted within 1 month of their PPCM diagnosis. Median duration of LVAD support was 19 (2–92) months with median follow up of 67 (18–136) months (100% complete). In-hospital and 1-year mortality were 0% and 8.3%, respectively. Two patients died on LVAD support, four patients were successfully bridged to transplantation, two patients are still on LVAD, and four were successfully weaned due to sufficient LV recovery (one died after LV function deteriorated again). Conclusion: LVAD treatment of decompensated end-stage PPCM is feasible. Early LVAD provision led to hemodynamic stabilization in our cohort and facilitated safe LV recovery in one third of these young female patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-424
Number of pages8
JournalArtificial Organs
Issue number2
Early online date16 Sept 2022
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2023


  • Lvad
  • Ppcm
  • Bridge to recovery
  • Bridge to transplant
  • Destination therapy

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