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Ann Thorac Surg. 2001 Aug;72(2):391-5.

Neonatal repair of truncus arteriosus: continuing improvement in outcomes.

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  • 1Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco 94143-0118, USA.



Repair of truncus arteriosus in the neonatal and early infant periods has become standard practice at many centers. We reviewed our recent experience with repair of truncus arteriosus in neonates, with a focus on early and intermediate outcomes.


From July 1992 to December 1999, 65 patients 1 month of age or less underwent primary complete repair of truncus arteriosus. Median age was 10 days, and median weight was 3.2 kg. Major associated anomalies included moderate or severe truncal valve regurgitation in 15 patients (23%), interrupted aortic arch in 8 (12%), coronary artery abnormalities in 12 (18%), and nonconfluence of the pulmonary arteries in 3 (5%). Median durations of cardiopulmonary bypass and cardioplegic arrest were 172 minutes and 90 minutes, respectively. Circulatory arrest was employed only in 7 patients undergoing concomitant repair of interrupted arch. Reconstruction of the right ventricular outflow tract was achieved with an aortic (n = 39) or pulmonary (n = 26) allograft valved conduit (median diameter, 12 mm). Replacement (n = 6) or repair (n = 5) of a regurgitant truncal valve was performed in 11 patients, and interrupted arch was repaired in 8.


There were three early deaths (5%). Early reoperations included reexploration for bleeding in 3 patients, emergent replacement of a pulmonary outflow conduit that failed acutely in 1 patient, and placement of a permanent pacemaker in 1. Mechanical circulatory support was required in 1 patient. During the median follow-up of 32 months, there were two deaths. The Kaplan-Meier estimate of survival was 92% at 1 year and beyond. The only demographic, diagnostic, or operative factors significantly associated with poorer survival over time were operative weight of 2.5 kg or less (p = 0.01) and truncal valve replacement (p = 0.009). Actuarial freedom from conduit replacement among early survivors was 57% at 3 years.


Repair of truncus arteriosus in the neonatal period can be performed routinely with excellent survival, even in patients with major associated abnormalities.

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