Mayo Clinic's approach

A team of doctors and staff in a group in a discussion. Mayo Clinic VAD team

A team of doctors and other staff discusses ventricular assist device (VAD) care.

Related information

Ventricular Assist Device — VAD — Mayo Clinic
  • Experience. Mayo Clinic doctors trained in heart disease (cardiologists) and heart surgeons (cardiac surgeons) have extensive experience treating people who may need ventricular assist devices (VADs).
  • Heart failure treatment expertise. Mayo Clinic offers multiple innovative treatments for people with advanced heart failure, including offering ventricular assist devices as a treatment option for restrictive cardiomyopathy and other complex conditions. Mayo doctors have experience and expertise treating a wide range of conditions, including heart failure, restrictive cardiomyopathy, amyloidosis and high-risk complex conditions.


    Mayo Clinic's campuses in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota each offer a Heart Failure Clinic staffed by a team of cardiologists and other specialists trained in evaluating and treating heart failure.

  • Multidisciplinary team. Mayo Clinic doctors with training in a wide array of specialties collaborate as a multidisciplinary team to provide coordinated, comprehensive care. Cardiologists and cardiac surgeons may work with nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, physical therapists, social workers and others to provide your care.
  • Individualized approach. Doctors at Mayo Clinic provide care for you as a whole person. Doctors take the time to get to know you and work with you to provide exactly the care you need.
  • Surgical expertise. Mayo cardiovascular surgeons have experience and expertise in performing surgery to implant ventricular assist devices. Surgeons can implant a variety of devices, and they can work with you to choose the most appropriate option for you.

    Mayo Clinic is one of a few centers in the United States to offer all available device options, offering you a wide range of possible ventricular assist devices.

  • All devices available at Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic offers all available approved ventricular assist devices, including:

    • HeartMate II
    • SynCardia TAH
    • Berlin Heart EXCOR Pediatric Ventricular Assist Device

    Mayo Clinic also offers investigational ventricular assist devices, including:

    • HeartAssist 5
    • 50cc SynCardia TAH
  • Research and innovation. Mayo Clinic researchers conduct ongoing studies and clinical trials to improve ventricular assist devices, and they have published a large volume of publications regarding VADs. Mayo Clinic researchers have been primary investigators in many national trials for ventricular assist devices.

    Mayo researchers test investigational devices in clinical trials. You may have the opportunity to participate in clinical trials of investigational devices.

    For example, researchers are studying a miniature ventricular assist device that may be available in clinical trials in the future.

    Also, Mayo surgeons have used their expertise to develop innovative, unusual designs of ventricular assist devices to use in specific cases. In one situation, surgeons implanted an internal left ventricular assist device and an external right ventricular assist device in a person.

  • Accessible locations. Mayo Clinic offers geographic accessibility to Mayo Clinic's campuses in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota from most locations. Each of these three sites can be accessed by nearby international airports.
  • Pediatric care. In some instances, children may be candidates for ventricular assist device implantation. Specialists trained in pediatric cardiology and cardiovascular surgery care for children who have heart disease at Mayo Clinic's campus in Minnesota.

    Why choose Mayo Clinic for cardiovascular care

    The Mayo Clinic experience and patient stories

    Our patients tell us that the quality of their interactions, our attention to detail and the efficiency of their visits mean health care like they've never experienced. See the stories of satisfied Mayo Clinic patients.

    1. Teamwork, Tenacity at the Heart of Mat Walker's Recovery

      When Mat Walker had a device implanted to aid his failing heart, it was just the beginning of a long road to better health. But a host of Mayo Clinic care providers assembled to assist Mat as he worked toward his recovery goals. After all he's been through over the past year, Mat Walker takes [...]

    2. Chronicling a Transplant Through the Eyes of a Caregiver

      Throughout Bob Washnock's journey to a heart transplant, his wife, Pam, was dedicated to being his caregiver. Pam then turned that experience into a book about caregiving in hopes of encouraging and supporting others who find themselves in that role. In the early morning hours of Feb. 20, 2013, Bob Washnock announced to his wife, [...]

    3. New Heart, New Hope and a Real Chance at a Future

      After years of struggling with cardiomyopathy, a heart transplant at Mayo Clinic renewed Thomas Kim's health and rekindled his confidence in the future. Thomas Kim had all but forgotten what it was like to make long-term plans. With his wife, Yona, by his side, the 48-year-old spent years focused on trying to figure out what [...]

    4. Comprehensive Care Offers Virginia Man a Path to Transplant

      When congestive heart failure led to the need for a heart transplant, Vincent Arnold turned to Mayo Clinic. The care he received took all his medical concerns into account, providing him a way to return to better health. It's been almost four years since Vincent Arnold began feeling winded and feeling like his heart was [...]

    5. Life Beyond A Heart Transplant is Vibrant and Full for Elmo Aquino

      Fifteen years ago, Elmo Aquino, a resident of Orange Park, Florida, was an avid runner. He'd competed in Jacksonville's Gate River Run, an annual 15-kilometer running event, several times. But one morning in the summer of 2001, his active lifestyle came to an abrupt end when suddenly, while on a treadmill, he found he couldn't [...]

    Expertise and rankings

    A team of doctors and staff in a group in a consult while using a tablet. Mayo Clinic VAD care team

    A team of doctors and other staff use technology while discussing ventricular assist device (VAD) care.


    Mayo Clinic cardiologists and cardiac surgeons have expertise in treating people who may need ventricular assist devices (VADs). Mayo Clinic consistently ranks at a high level for survival in treatment outcomes for ventricular assist devices.

    Mayo Clinic offers one of the largest groups of cardiac surgeons and cardiologists trained in ventricular assist devices in the nation. Mayo doctors implant more than 100 ventricular assist devices each year.

    A group of doctors and staff having a discussion. Mayo Clinic care team

    Mayo doctors and other staff collaborate as a team to care for people who may need ventricular assist devices.

    Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., Mayo Clinic in Phoenix/Scottsdale, Ariz., and Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., are ranked among the Best Hospitals for heart and heart surgery by U.S. News & World Report. Mayo Clinic Children's Center in Rochester, Minn., is ranked among the Best Children's Hospitals for heart and heart surgery by U.S. News & World Report.

    With Mayo Clinic's emphasis on collaborative care, specialists at each of the campuses — Minnesota, Arizona and Florida — interact very closely with colleagues at the other campuses and the Mayo Clinic Health System.

    Learn more about Mayo Clinic's cardiovascular surgery and cardiovascular medicine departments' expertise and rankings.

    Locations, travel and lodging

    Mayo Clinic has major campuses in Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona; Jacksonville, Florida; and Rochester, Minnesota. The Mayo Clinic Health System has dozens of locations in several states.

    For more information on visiting Mayo Clinic, choose your location below:

    Costs and insurance

    Mayo Clinic works with hundreds of insurance companies and is an in-network provider for millions of people.

    In most cases, Mayo Clinic doesn't require a physician referral. Some insurers require referrals, or may have additional requirements for certain medical care. All appointments are prioritized on the basis of medical need.

    Learn more about appointments at Mayo Clinic.

    Please contact your insurance company to verify medical coverage and to obtain any needed authorization prior to your visit. Often, your insurer's customer service number is printed on the back of your insurance card.

    Clinical trials

    Explore Mayo Clinic studies testing new treatments, interventions and tests as a means to prevent, detect, treat or manage this disease.

    April 12, 2019
    1. What is a ventricular assist device? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Accessed Aug. 10, 2015.
    2. What is heart failure? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Accessed Aug. 10, 2015.
    3. Aroesty JM, et al. Circulatory assist devices: Cardiopulmonary assist device and short-term left ventricular assist devices. Accessed Aug. 3, 2015.
    4. Yancy CW, et al. 2013 ACCF/AHA guideline for the management of heart failure: A report of the American College of Cardiology Foundation/American Heart Association Task Force on practice guidelines. Circulation. 2013;128:e240.
    5. Implantable medical devices for heart failure. American Heart Association. Accessed Aug. 10, 2015.
    6. Birks EJ. Intermediate- and long-term mechanical circulatory support. Accessed Aug. 3, 2015.
    7. What is a total artificial heart? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Accessed Aug. 11, 2015.
    8. AskMayoExpert. What are the therapeutic options for the various stages of heart failure? Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
    9. Stulak JM, et al. Ventricular assist device selection: Which one and when? Croatian Medical Journal. 2014;55:596.
    10. Mancini D. Practical management of long-term mechanical circulatory support devices. Accessed Aug. 3, 2015.
    11. Mancini D, et al. Left ventricular assist devices: A rapidly evolving alternative to transplant. Journal of the American College of Cardiology. 2015;65:2542.
    12. Riggin EA. Allscripts EPSi. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 4, 2015.
    13. What is cardiac rehabilitation? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Accessed Aug. 13, 2015.
    14. Givertz MM. Ventricular assist devices: Important information for patients and families. Circulation. 2011;124e:e305.
    15. Kirkpatrick JN, et al. Ventricular assist devices for treatment of acute heart failure and chronic heart failure. Heart. 2015;101:1091.
    16. Bonow RO, et al. Mechanical circulatory support. In: Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2015. Accessed Sept. 25, 2015.
    17. Murray MJ, et al. Management of end-stage heart failure: Heart transplantation and ventricular assist devices. In: Faust's Anesthesiology Review. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2015. Accessed Sept. 25, 2015.
    18. La Franca E, et al. Heart failure and mechanical circulatory assist devices. Global Journal of Health Science. 2013;5:11.
    19. Barbara Woodward Lips Patient Education Center. Getting ready for heart surgery. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2011.
    20. How can I prepare for heart surgery? American Heart Association. Accessed Sept. 25, 2015.
    21. Cheung A, et al. Design concepts and preclinical results of a miniaturized HeartWare platform: The MVAD system. Innovations. 2015;10:151.
    22. First woman receives an artificial heart implant. The New York Times. Dec. 20, 1985. Accessed Oct. 12, 2015.
    23. DeVries WC, et al. Clinical use of the total artificial heart. The New England Journal of Medicine. 1984;310:273.
    24. Joyce LD, et al. Use of the mini-Jarvik 7 total artificial heart as a bridge to transplantation. The Journal of Heart Transplantation. 1986;5:203.
    25. U.S. News Best Hospitals 2015-2016. U.S. News & World Report. Accessed Oct. 29, 2015.
    26. Intermacs Quality Assurance Quarterly Report (2015 Q1). Interagency Registry for Mechanically Assisted Circulatory Support, University of Alabama. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Contract No. HHSN268201100025C. Accessed Nov. 12, 2015.
    27. Kushwaha SS (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Nov. 30, 2015.
    28. Cecka JM, et al. Clinical Transplants 2003. Los Angeles, Calif.: UCLA Immunogenetics Center; 2004.
    29. Joyce DL, et al. Mechanical Circulatory Support: Principles and Applications. New York, N.Y.: McGraw-Hill Medical; 2012.
    30. Joyce LD (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Jan. 7, 2016.

    Ventricular assist device (VAD)