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Catheter Cardiovasc Interv. 2008 Mar 1;71(4):573-7. doi: 10.1002/ccd.21390.

Asymptomatic significant patent foramen ovale: giving patent foramen ovale management back to the cardiologist.

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  • 1Cardiovascular Diagnosis and Endoluminal Interventions, Rovigo General Hospital, Rovigo, Italy. jackyheart@hotmail.com


Percutaneous closure of patent foramen ovale (PFO) is still a much debated issue. Although many questions remain open, patients are finding out about PFO management and are beginning to ask for the most rapid and complete solution to their potential problems in spite of the warnings from the medical profession about off-label indications for transcatheter closure. As a result, asymptomatic patients with PFO are coming into medical offices to be assured about stroke risk or treated for any degree of migraine. The cardiologist should be the preferred interlocutor in asymptomatic significant PFO: he is competent in assessing the associated anatomical and functional risk factors, and he is the only specialist who can evaluate on the basis of the anatomo-functional picture the potential risk of paradoxical embolism and discuss with patients eventual off-label indications to closure.

(c) 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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