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Definition of VAD

VAD: Ventricular assist device, a mechanical pump that takes over the function of the damaged ventricle of the heart and restores normal blood flow.

Left ventricular assist devices were developed for patients with heart disease from which they were not expected to recover and who needed mechanical support as a bridge to a heart transplant. These devices were then used in patients with heart failure who needed ventricular assistance to allow their heart to rest and recover its function, permitting longer survival and better quality of life. Left ventricular assist devices also are a treatment for patients with advanced heart failure who are not candidates for cardiac transplantation.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=19100
Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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