The FDA granted approval for the pumps to be used in combination with "extracorporeal membrane oxygenation," or ECMO, in which a machine is used to replace the function of the heart and lungs in patients suffering multiple failures.
COVID-19 causes widespread inflammation that can result in damage to the lungs and heart. Some patients have developed severe inflammation that resulted in both heart and lung failure.
The Impella pumps combined with ECMO therapy have "become an important tool for physicians treating COVID-19 patients suffering from both heart and lung failure," Abiomed said.
"The early clinical evidence continues to accrue in favor of including left ventricular [relief] in many patients on ECMO," Dr. Christian Bermudez of the University of Pennsylvania said in a statement.
"The superior clinical outcomes from the combination of Impella and ECMO are likely the result of reducing the stress on the myocardium and work required of the left ventricle, also reducing secondary lung injury due to pulmonary congestion."