In 2012, the Canadian Society of Cardiology indicated that patients supported with left ventricular assist device (LVAD) may drive a private vehicle 2 months after implantation, provided they are deemed clinically stable. Objective evidence supporting this recommendation is limited. We sought to compare data regarding driving habits in our patients following LVAD implantation.
A standard questionnaire addressing driving patterns before and after LVAD implantation was sent to all living patients who had received an LVAD between January 2010 and January 2014. Ninety-four of 124 patients responded (average age 58 years, 69.2% men, 77.7% bridge to transplant).
Prior to LVAD, all were living at home, 33% were employed, and 93% were driving. Sixty-nine percent indicated they drove after LVAD implantation; they were younger (56 vs 62 years, p=0.02) and had providers recommendation (p=0.004). Four of seven patients who had not driven before started driving (p
Most patients returned to driving after LVAD implantation. A minority had LVAD-associated alarms that were easily addressed. We suggest inclusion of driving habits in registries to provide clarity on the safety of driving while being supported with LVAD.
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Pinninti, Mamatha; Sauld, Christina; Thohan, Vinay; Cheema, Omar; Hastings, T. Edward; Crouch, John; Downey, Frank; and Sulemanjee, Nasir Z.
"Does Left Ventricular Assist Device Implantation Affect Driving Patterns in Patients With End-Stage Heart Failure?,"
The VAD Journal: Vol. 3
, Article 5.
Available at: http://uknowledge.uky.edu/vad/vol3/iss1/5