Protected percutaneous coronary intervention with Impella CP in a patient with left main disease, severe left ventricular systolic dysfunction and established hemolysis

Klio Konstantinou, Thomas R. Keeble, Paul A. Kelly, Osama Alsanjari, L. Christian Napp, Grigoris V. Karamasis, John R. Davies


The use of the Impella device in patients with left ventricular (LV) systolic impairment undergoing left main (LM) percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) has been growing exponentially. Data from observational studies and registries demonstrate that Impella-assisted high-risk PCI is safe and effective with a low rate of peri-procedural complications. Hemolysis is a potential limitation of virtually all mechanical circulatory support devices and a small incidence of hemolysis has been associated with Impella use. The safety and feasibility of Impella use in patients with established hemolysis has not been previously evaluated. We report the first described case in the literature of Impella-assisted left main stem (LMS) PCI in a patient with severe LV systolic dysfunction and autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA). Despite the patient's high bleeding risk (active hemolysis, thrombocytopenia, impaired renal function, use of steroids), Impella placement and PCI were successfully performed without complication. Haemoglobin, bilirubin and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) levels were closely monitored peri-procedurally with no evidence of exacerbation of the patient’s hemolysis. We briefly discuss the mechanism of Impella-induced hemolysis and factors that can exacerbate hemolysis.