Rhode Island Hospital
593 Eddy Street
Providence, RI 02903
. . . . . .
Frank Sellke, MD
Arun K. Singh, MD
Afshin Ehsan, MD
Neel R. Sodha, MD
Heart failure surgery is especially appropriate for patients with a pump
and ejection fraction below 25 percent. Ejection fraction refers to the
percentage of blood that leaves the heart each time it contracts. When
the heart contracts, it ejects blood from the two ventricles; when the
heart relaxes, the ventricles refill with blood. Because the left
ventricle is the heart’s main pumping chamber, ejection fraction is
usually measured only in the left ventricle, where typically between 55
to 70 percent of the blood is pumped out. An ejection fraction below 35
percent` may indicate heart failure.
Heart failure surgery includes left ventricle reconstruction, as well as
mitral valve repair with coronary artery bypass surgery and
biventricular pacing. These operations offer an alternative to heart
transplant surgery for some patients. The results of these procedures
have been good in many instances, in that many patients have been able
to avoid heart transplantation for many years.