Risk of Stroke with Impella Placement Is Not Associated with Access Vessel

Dov Levine, Lindsay Volk, Tudor Vagaonescu, Cassandra Soto, Hirohisa Ikegami, Aziz Ghaly, Anthony Lemaire

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: The Impella heart pump is an intravascular microaxial device that provides short-term mechanical circulatory support and can be placed through the femoral, axillary, or central vessels. One of the most feared complications is stroke. It is unclear if patient stroke risk varies based on access vessel. Methods: A retrospective review of consecutive patients who underwent Impella placement at an academic institution from January 1, 2007, through September 15, 2018, was performed. Four groups were compared: (1) minimally invasive Impella (femoral or axillary access), (2) minimally invasive Impella upgraded to another minimally invasive Impella, (3) minimally invasive Impella upgraded to a central Impella (ascending aorta), and (4) central Impella. Patient charts were reviewed to identify baseline characteristics. Outcome measures included length of stay, stroke, and mortality. Results: A total of 349 patients (or 407 Impellas) were identified, and the majority of the devices were inserted through a minimally invasive approach (n = 248, 60.9%), while the remainder were implanted via central access (n = 159, 39.1%). Minimally invasive Impellas were upgraded in 44 patients. The risk of stroke for the entire cohort was 10.3% (n = 36), with no difference observed in any particular group. Overall mortality was 44.4% (n = 155). Of the patients who initially received a minimally invasive Impella, those who were upgraded had higher rates of mortality (56.8% vs 39.4%, P = 0.03), postoperative dialysis (50.0% vs 27.4%, P < 0.01), and sepsis (43.2% vs 20.0%, P < 0.01). Conclusions: This study found no statistically significant difference in rates of postoperative stroke based on initial access vessel.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-29
Number of pages5
JournalInnovations: Technology and Techniques in Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • cardiogenic shock
  • stroke


Dive into the research topics of 'Risk of Stroke with Impella Placement Is Not Associated with Access Vessel'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this