Advanced Heart Failure Program


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When you have congestive heart failure, your heart cannot pump enough blood to meet your body’s needs. As a result, you may get short of breath, tire easily and develop swelling in your ankles, legs, and feet. Some people eventually need a heart transplant.

Heart Failure Care at the MUSC Health Heart & Vascular Center: Why Choose Us?

High Performing Hospital US New & World Report 2020-2021 Heart Failure 

The Advanced Heart Failure Program at MUSC Health’s Heart & Vascular Center offers more treatment options than any other program in the state. Our doctors are dedicated to helping you enjoy life again.

When you come to us for heart failure treatment you benefit from:

  • Comprehensive Care: We are the only medical center in the state with a comprehensive program specifically focused on helping those with heart failure. Our comprehensive services feature diagnosis, personalized treatment plans, cardiac rehab, and lifelong heart care.
  • Exclusive Treatment Options: Our doctors’ involvement in clinical trials gives you access to treatments not available elsewhere in the state. In addition, we are the only medical center in South Carolina performing heart transplants.
  • Depth of Experience: Our team members, including more than 20 doctors and nurses, have dedicated their careers to heart failure. This expertise enables us to provide care to patients with serious heart problems. Our heart specialists collaborate to develop a treatment plan that takes into account your unique health needs. Meet our team.
  • Convenient Follow-Up Care: Heart failure requires ongoing monitoring. We work with your referring doctor to ensure you receive the care you need closer to home. We also partner with cardiologists across the state and have regional clinic locations. Our cardiac rehab program can help strengthen your heart.

MUSC Health’s Heart & Vascular Center is the only center in South Carolina that provides a complete range of heart failure treatments. Our heart failure experts have the necessary skills and training to offer you treatment options not found elsewhere. Some of these treatments may return you to a better quality of life faster.

Heart Failure Treatments at the MUSC Health Heart & Vascular Center

In addition to standard options such as medication management, we also offer these specialized treatments:

Mechanical Circulatory Support (VADs)

Mechanical circulatory support devices such as ventricular assist devices (VADs) help your heart pump blood. Our doctors’ active participation in national clinical trials gives you access to the latest, most advanced VADs available.

At the Heart & Vascular Center, our doctors use VADs in two ways:

  • Bridge to Transplant: If you need a heart transplant, a VAD can temporarily support your weakened heart until a donor heart is available.
  • Destination Therapy: VADs are a long-term treatment option for people with heart failure who are unable to get, or do not want, a heart transplant. 

Learn more about mechanical circulatory support (VADs) at MUSC Health

Heart Transplants

Since performing South Carolina’s first heart transplant in 1987, our transplant specialists at MUSC Health have saved the lives of more than 450 South Carolinians with severe heart failure. We continue to be the state’s only pioneering transplant leader.

Our comprehensive program is designed to address all of your cardiac needs. We offer the latest bridge-to-transplant devices to support your heart while you wait for a transplant. After a transplant, you can improve your health through our heart-strengthening cardiac rehab program. Learn more about heart transplants at MUSC Health.

CardioMEMS™ for Heart Failure Surveillance

MUSC Health is the only hospital in South Carolina to use the CardioMEMS home monitoring system for patients with heart failure. Our heart failure team uses information transmitted from this implanted device to monitor your heart health from the convenience of your home.

These daily readings enable our team to detect warning signs of heart failure before symptoms appear. Our doctors adjust treatment as needed to help you avoid hospitalization and enhance your quality of life.


Heart specialists at the MUSC Health Cardio-Oncology Program work with your cancer doctor to protect your heart before, during, and after cancer treatments. Learn more about cardio-oncology care at MUSC Health.

Alcohol Septal Ablation for Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

The Heart & Vascular Center is among a select few centers nationwide with the expertise to perform alcohol septal ablation. This procedure is a safer, nonsurgical approach to treating hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCOM), an often inherited condition that causes the heart muscle to thicken abnormally and obstruct the flow of blood out of the heart during each heartbeat.

The traditional treatment for HCOM is a surgical procedure called a septal myectomy to remove thickened heart muscle. During an alcohol septal ablation:

  • Doctors inject small amounts of purified alcohol into a catheter to destroy and shrink enlarged cells.
  • Advanced imaging technology available in our cardiac catheter lab allows our doctors to apply the alcohol with great precision.
  • Blood flow into and out of your heart improves when the overgrown heart muscle shrinks.

Heart Valve Surgery

In addition to traditional open-heart surgical procedures to repair or replace faulty heart valves, we also offer minimally invasive catheter-based treatment options.

Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR)

Our heart valve specialists are the state’s leading experts in transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) for high-risk patients with severe aortic stenosis. We also are the only medical center in South Carolina offering a first-of-its-kind device called the MitraClip® to treat patients who have severe mitral regurgitation.