Heart Programs - University of Minnesota Physicians Heart at Fairview

Heart Failure Program

Advanced Heart Failure program at University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview, is one of the largest and most sophisticated in the nation. Our physicians are at the forefront of a generation of breakthroughs in advanced heart failure management and heart transplant. As leaders in innovative diagnostics, treatments and research, we are committed to bringing the science and art of medicine together to provide the best possible outcomes for patients and their families.

University Minnesota Physicians Heart at Fairview work closely with University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview, to offer the most current and promising array of treatment options to people living with advanced heart failure, including active drug protocols and research, surgical innovations, biventricular pacing, resynchronization therapy, mechanical assist devices, heart transplants and the use of stem-cell therapy to repair failing hearts.

University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview is the most experienced heart transplant program in Minnesota. For 33 years, the center has become internationally renowned for its care and outcomes. The center has performed more than 700 heart transplants (the most in Minnesota) and more than 500 LVADs (mechanical assist devices) which puts us in the top five programs in the nation. Our skilled specialists train heart professionals from other medical centers across the country as they develop their own programs.

In most cases, heart failure patients are seen by our specialists within three days of referral—a contributing factor to our success in keeping patients out of the hospital and in some cases, making heart transplantation unnecessary.

A pioneer program, heart failure to transplant

  • Our heart transplant program is one of only 17 centers nationally to receive a 2010 Medal of Honor for its outstanding one-year post transplant survival rate from the United States Department of Health and Human Services. We were the only Minnesota facility to earn this honor.
  • Our one-year heart transplant survival rate of 95 percent exceeds the national average and is among the best in the world.
  • Our 33-year-old program is one of longest-running and most experienced heart transplant treatment centers in the world.
  • Our surgeons performed the first heart transplant in Minnesota in 1978 and the state’s first heart/lung transplant in 1986
  • We are a national leader in implanting ventricular assist devices (LVADs), performing more than 60 to 80 LVADs each year
  • We are a recognized pioneer in mechanical circulatory support (MCS) bridge to transplantation clinical trials. We are one of a handful of sites in the nation approved to train surgeons in transplant state-of-the-art technologies that include Thoratec® HeartMate® II, Ventracor VentrAssist® LVAD, HeartWare® Ventricular Assist System and Levitronix® CentriMag® Pump
  • Heart failure and VAD clinical trials exploring advanced technology and medical management allow our team to remain on the cutting edge of advanced heart failure treatment options
  • The University of Minnesota is one of 8 centers selected by the National Institute of Health to develop and evaluate new treatments for congestive heart failure

The number of hospitalizations for people living with advanced heart failure continues to grow. Our University of Minnesota Physicians Heart at Fairview advanced heart failure team offers the most recent and promising array of treatment options at the University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview, Minneapolis.

We offer a full spectrum of treatments and services for patients, from minimally symptomatic patients to those with advanced disease. Among these treatments are proven state-of-the-art medications, mechanical heart assist devices and surgical interventions including resynchronization therapy and transplantation.

Treatments and services

  • Evaluation and medical treatment of advanced heart failure
  • Implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs)
  • Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT)
  • Ablation therapy for atrial and ventricular arrhythmias
  • Cardiac surgery for high-risk patients, including off-pump coronary revascularization
  • Mitral valve repair in patients with cardiac dysfunction
  • MRI imaging of the heart
  • Investigational drugs and devices
  • Left ventricular assist devices (LVADs)
  • Cardiac transplantation
  • Cardiac rehabilitation