Ventricular Assist Device (VAD) Program

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Ventricular Assist Device (VAD) Program

Innovative devices to help children's hearts

Children's Health has the only pediatric inpatient VAD program in North Texas. We offer inpatient and outpatient services, helping kids with heart failure stay strong and healthy.

Some children are born with heart defects or have certain diseases that reduce their heart’s ability to pump blood. VADs are mechanical devices that help pump blood for the heart. Most children get a VAD while they prepare for heart transplant, but some keep their devices long-term.

We are trained in many different VAD types and models, and we frequently study and adopt new ones. Our expertise means we can offer VADs to children of any age and size. 

We care for VAD patients through our Heart Failure Program, which specializes in all treatment options for children with heart failure, including transplant.

Learn more about VADs

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Innovative technology for kids' heart support


VAD technology can be lifesaving for young patients who need heart support. Whether they require help for a few hours or a year, Children’s Health℠ has the expertise to provide the care these children need to lead full lives. 

Complete outpatient VAD services for children

Our goal is to provide children who have heart failure with the highest possible quality of life. That includes helping some children with VADs return home and go to school. If your child is eligible to go home, we carefully train you and them on how to maintain their device and monitor their health outside the hospital. We also work closely with schools, first responders and other members of the community to make sure they understand your child’s needs and how to support them. If anything comes up, you can call or text our dedicated nurse line any time, day or night.

Resuming their normal lives with a VAD has worked wonders for many of our patients. Some kids and teens get back to sports and other normal activities, and become so comfortable with their VADs that they choose to delay transplant and keep them for months or longer. Our team provides the counsel and care that is right for your child’s needs and desires.

Care throughout your child's VAD journey

At Children’s Health, pediatric heart specialists, surgeons, nurses and other experts stay closely involved in your child’s care. You have the same care team at your side from diagnosis to VAD implantation, recovery and preparation for the next stage in your child’s treatment.

Leaders in VAD care and research

VADs small enough to be used in children first became available in the early 2000s. Our team immediately started studying and training with them, so we could provide this lifeline to children who need it. We have implanted more than 110 VAD devices, giving us the experience and expertise to select the right VAD for your child and give them the best opportunity for long-term success.

We also seek improvements to VAD care as part of a global community of experts that conducts research and shares information. One of our own team members developed content for a digital app for children who go home with their VAD. The app allows you and your child to keep a daily log of information about their health and VAD readings, which our care team uses to provide you with up-to-date insights and advice.

Meet the Care Team