Hyponatremia Is a Powerful Predictor of Poor Prognosis in Left Ventricular Assist Device Patients

Anjan Tibrewala, Ramsey M. Wehbe, Tingqing Wu, Rebecca Harap, Kambiz Ghafourian, Jane E. Wilcox, Ike S. Okwuosa, Esther E. Vorovich, Faraz S. Ahmad, Clyde Yancy, Amit Pawale, Allen S. Anderson, Duc T. Pham, Jonathan D. Rich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Serum sodium is an established prognostic marker in heart failure (HF) patients and is associated with an increased risk of morbidity and mortality. We sought to study the prognostic value of serum sodium in left ventricular assist device (LVAD) patients and whether hyponatremia reflects worsening HF or an alternative mechanism. We identified HF patients that underwent LVAD implantation between 2008 and 2019. Hyponatremia was defined as Na ≤134 mEq/L at 3 months after implantation. We assessed for differences in hyponatremia before and after LVAD implantation. We also evaluated the association of hyponatremia with all-cause mortality and recurrent HF hospitalizations. There were 342 eligible LVAD patients with a sodium value at 3 months. Among them, there was a significant improvement in serum sodium after LVAD implantation compared to preoperatively (137.2 vs. 134.7 mEq/L, P < 0.0001). Patients with and without hyponatremia had no significant differences in echocardiographic and hemodynamic measurements. In a multivariate analysis, hyponatremia was associated with a markedly increased risk of all-cause mortality (HR 3.69, 95% CI, 1.93-7.05, P < 0.001) when accounting for age, gender, co-morbidities, use of loop diuretics, and B-Type natriuretic peptide levels. Hyponatremia was also significantly associated with recurrent HF hospitalizations (HR 2.11, 95% CI, 1.02-4.37, P = 0.04). Hyponatremia in LVAD patients is associated with significantly higher risk of all-cause mortality and recurrent HF hospitalizations. Hyponatremia may be a marker of ongoing neurohormonal activation that is more sensitive than other lab values, echocardiography parameters, and hemodynamic measurements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1475-1482
Number of pages8
JournalASAIO Journal
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • heart failure
  • hyponatremia
  • left ventricular assist device
  • neurohormonal activation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biophysics
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Biomaterials


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