When more is not better—appropriately excluding patients from mechanical circulatory support therapy
Mechanical circulatory support (MCS) devices are continually evolving and are providing greater hemodynamic support. This review was conducted to evaluate the prophylactic use of MCS in hemodynamically stable patients who were awaiting future coronary artery revascularization. A thorough review of published literature was conducted to evaluate for patients and clinical scenarios that are indicated for MCS, including hemodynamically stable and unstable patients awaiting revascularization. Although there have been several studies demonstrating the benefit of MCS use in hemodynamically unstable patients, there was limited trials in patients that were hemodynamically stable. The use of prophylactic MCS was limited to intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP) in “high risk” patients awaiting coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). This review article was conducted to evaluate for possible prophylactic MCS in patients awaiting revascularization. In hemodynamically stable patients, literature is limited to the use of IABP for “high-risk” patients awaiting CABG. A thorough review of literature suggest that hemodynamically stable patients likely would not benefit from prophylactic placement MCS while awaiting revascularization although further clinical trials are needed to identify the ideal patients and clinical scenarios for the use of MCS.