Management:
Prof. Dr. med. Nicolas Doll
Prof. Dr. med. Gerold Mönnig
Prof. Dr. med. Nils Reiss

Team:
Dr. med. Maike Altesellmeier
Prof. Dr. med. Jochen Pöling
Dr. Sportwiss. Thomas Schmidt

Heart failure is a chronic disease, as a result of which every second to third patient dies within five years. In the treatment of terminal heart failure, heart transplantation was the gold standard after all conservative drug measures had been exhausted. Not least due to the limited number of donor hearts, further promising treatment procedures for heart failure patients have been developed in addition to heart transplantation. Especially the implantation of a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) has become established in recent years as treatment for endstage heart failure.

The LVAD technology and the quality of live of LVAD patients is constantly improving. Nevertheless, a number of problems – especially over the long-term course – remained unsolved (e.g. thromboses, bleedings or driveline infections). As part of our research efforts, promising approaches are to be found to significantly reduce the susceptibility to complications of this special patient group.

Within the framework of a working group (AK-VAD DGPR) there is also a regular exchange between physicians from German cardiological rehabilitation clinics regarding their experiences in the treatment of VAD patients. In recent years, this working group, which is headed by the Schüchtermann Clinic in Bad Rothenfelde, has published two position papers on follow-up treatment after VAD implantation.

Furthermore, new heart failure blood markers are being evaluated in co-operation with experimental research with regard to their significance for the long-term course.

In addition, a Prehabilitation study is planned for heart failure patients (> 75 years) who undergo an elective cardiological or cardiosurgical intervention in our clinic. The aim of this multicenter study is to examine the effects of a 2-week prehabilitation (physical training, training, psychology) with regard to the long-term results.

Research projects:

• AK-VAD (DGPR)
• Heart failure blood marker
• Prehabilitation study