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Ann Thorac Surg. 2003 Feb;75(2):399-410; discussion 410-1.

Late follow-up of 1095 patients undergoing operation for complex congenital heart disease utilizing pulmonary ventricle to pulmonary artery conduits.

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  • 1Division of Cardiovascular Surgery, Mayo Clinic and Mayo Foundation, Rochester, Minnesota 55905, USA.



Pulmonary ventricle (PV) to pulmonary artery (PA) conduits have made possible the correction of many complex congenital cardiac anomalies.


Between April 1964 and January 2001, 1270 patients underwent operation with conduit placement from the PV to PA. The present study evaluates late outcome of 1095 patients (612 males, 483 females) having an operation before July 1992. Mean age was 9.6 +/- 8.2 years old. Diagnoses included pulmonary atresia/tetralogy of Fallot (459), transposition of the great arteries (TGA) (232), truncus arteriosus (193), double outlet right ventricle (DORV) (121), corrected TGA (49), septated univentricular heart (36), and other (5). A porcine-valved Dacron conduit was used in 730, homograft in 239, and non-valved conduit in 126.


Early mortality decreased from 23.5% prior to 1980 to 3.7% for the most recent decade. Mean follow-up was 10.9 years (maximum, 29 years). Actuarial survival for early survivors at 10 and 20 years was 77.0% +/- 1.5% and 59.5% +/- 2.6%. On univariate analysis, clinical and hemodynamic factors associated with late mortality were male gender, older age at operation, higher post-repair PV/systemic ventricle (SV) pressure ratio, higher distal PA pressure, and longer bypass time (p < or = 0.01 for all). On multivariate analysis, independent risk factors for late mortality were male gender, older age at operation, diagnosis of TGA, corrected TGA, truncus, or univentricular heart, and PV/SV pressure ratio > or = 0.72 (p < or = 0.03 for all). Freedom from reoperation for conduit failure at 10 and 20 years was 55.5% +/- 2.0% and 31.9% +/- 2.7%. On multivariate analysis, independent risk factors for conduit failure were homograft conduit, diagnosis of TGA, younger age at operation, and smaller conduit size (p < or = 0.007 for all). Reoperation for one conduit replacement was performed in 306 patients, two conduit replacements in 55 patients, three in 6 patients, and four in 3 patients. Overall early mortality for conduit replacement in this series was 4.9%; it was 1.7% for patients operated on from 1989 through 1992. At follow-up, 84% of survivors were in NYHA class I or II.


Operations that include conduit placement and replacement can be performed with low early mortality. Younger age at operation was associated with improved late survival. The diagnosis of TGA was associated with increased risk for conduit failure, and the durability of the homograft, in this series, was inferior to the porcine-valved Dacron conduit. Quality of life was excellent for most patients despite the need for reoperation.

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