Heart failure prevention and care in Dallas, TX

Heart failure is a weakening of the heart muscle, causing decreased blood flow to the body, inducing a hormonal surge by the brain, resulting in shortness of breath, fatigue, palpitations, cold extremities, swelling and chest pain.

At Medical City Heart Hospital, we offer specialized care you can trust. Our cardiologists are fellowship-trained in advanced heart failure and provide complete cardiovascular care through evaluation, treatment and recovery of patients with heart failure. If advanced therapies are needed, our experts are committed to a comprehensive process of evaluation and guidance. Our goal is to help patients return to normal daily life by providing quality care.

For more information about our heart failure services and treatment options, please call (972) 940-9500.

Goals of heart failure treatment and recovery

Our multispecialty team of experts, including heart failure cardiologists, surgeons, critical care specialists, internal medicine hospitalists, nurse practitioners, nurse coordinators, social workers, nutritionists and physical therapists complete initial evaluations. This helps provide answers to the underlying cause of heart failure.

The first step is to identify and fix the underlying cause of heart weakness. This process often involves procedures, intravenous medications, therapy, close follow-up and most importantly, time to heal.

We pride ourselves on educating patients about heart weakness and what they need to know to prevent future relapse. Upon discharge, patients are connected to our Heart Failure Clinic on campus. Through the clinic, our providers continue outpatient management to prevent readmission to the hospital.

Specialized procedures for advanced heart failure

Heart failure specialists at Medical City Heart Hospital have access to defibrillators to prevent sudden arrhythmia and biventricular pacemakers to resynchronize the electrical system of the heart. Physicians also perform CardioMEMS, a minimally invasive procedure allowing constant monitoring of lung pressures and fluid levels.

The multidisciplinary team is trained in using invasive pumps and devices to help patients recover. Through research initiatives, our team has access to leading-edge technology to assist patients.

Cardiogenic shock resources, including ECMO

Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is a life support machine. People who need ECMO have a severe and life-threatening illness that stops their heart or lungs from working correctly, and the device replaces the function of the heart and lungs. People are supported from a few hours to multiple days, depending on their condition and progress.

ECMO is for patients whose:

  • Lungs cannot provide enough oxygen
  • Lungs cannot get rid of carbon dioxide even with help from a mechanical ventilator
  • Heart cannot pump enough blood to the body

Through plastic tubes placed in large veins and arteries in the body, the ECMO machine pumps blood from the patient's body to an artificial lung (oxygenator), which adds oxygen and removes carbon dioxide. The ECMO machine returns the blood to the patient via a pump with the same force as the heart, replacing its function.

For inpatient transfer requests, please call (866) TX-SHOCK. For outpatient clinic consultation requests, please call (972) 940-9500 or fax a referral to (972) 940-9538.

Heart assist devices

Our ventricular assist device (VAD) program is patient-centered and equipped to handle the medical, social, psychological and financial needs of heart patients. Since the program’s inception in 1996, more than 250 VADs have been implanted.

Through heart failure classification improvement and a higher projected survival rate and quality of life, the program is able to offer patients a new beginning.

Left ventricular assist device (LVAD)

In advanced heart failure, the left ventricle can become too weak to provide adequate blood flow to organs. The LVAD is a surgically implanted pump replacing the work of the heart and redirecting blood to the body.

Pumps can be used in two ways: bridge or destination. In the bridge pathway, the LVAD is used to stabilize and literally bridge you to heart transplant in the near future. In the destination pathway, the LVAD is used as the sole support as transplantation is deemed not possible.

A preferred strategy is chosen based on the health of the patient. Coordinators from the hospital are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for any needs arising after discharge.

The LVAD is portable, battery-operated and used for months to years, allowing the freedom to enjoy improved quality of life. Patients are often allowed to return to work, travel, and exercise.

For inpatient transfer requests for LVAD evaluation, please call (866) TX-SHOCK. For an outpatient LVAD consultation request, please call (972) 940-9520 or fax a referral to (972) 940-9534.