DOI: 10.1177/08850666231216889 ISSN: 0885-0666

Right Heart Failure in the Intensive Care Unit: Etiology, Pathogenesis, Diagnosis, and Treatment

Elizabeth Tarras, Akhil Khosla, Paul M. Heerdt, Inderjit Singh
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine

Right heart (RH) failure carries a high rate of morbidity and mortality. Patients who present with RH failure often exhibit complex aberrant cardio-pulmonary physiology with varying presentations. The treatment of RH failure almost always requires care and management from an intensivist. Treatment options for RH failure patients continue to evolve rapidly with multiple options available, including different pharmacotherapies and mechanical circulatory support devices that target various components of the RH circulatory system. An understanding of the normal RH circulatory physiology, treatment, and support options for the RH failure patients is necessary for all intensivists to improve outcomes. The purpose of this review is to provide clinical guidance on the diagnosis and management of RH failure within the intensive care unit setting, and to highlight the different pathophysiological manifestations of RH failure, its hemodynamics, and treatment options available at the disposal of the intensivist.

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