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Am J Cardiol. 2002 Jun 1;89(11):1280-5.

Value of clinical and echocardiographic features in predicting outcome in the fetus, infant, and child with tetralogy of Fallot with absent pulmonary valve complex.

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Divison of Pediatric Cardiology, University of California at San Francisco, 94143, USA.


We describe clinical and echocardiographic features of tetralogy of Fallot with absent pulmonary valve complex (TOF/APVC) and hypothesized that outcome might be related to pulmonary artery enlargement or severity of illness. We examined the clinical records of all 23 patients evaluated at our institution before death or surgical correction of TOF/APVC between 1990 and 2000. Echocardiograms for 16 patients (including 5 fetuses) were also reviewed, and measurements of the semilunar valves and pulmonary arteries were obtained and compared with patient's aortic annulus size and with established normal subjects. Actuarial survival was 15 of 23 patients (68%) at 4 years. Four fetuses were hydropic and none survived; 7 patients were ventilator dependent at operation and only 3 survived. No difference was noted in pulmonary artery diameters in survivors versus nonsurvivors. Pulmonary valve annulus size was larger in nonsurvivors (103 +/- 25% vs 71 +/- 24% of normal, p = 0.03); however, when fetal examinations were excluded, this difference did not persist. Thus, only hydrops and ventilator dependence at diagnosis predicted mortality. There was no correlation between postnatal measurements of pulmonary arteries and outcome. Larger pulmonary annulus size in hydropic fetuses and poor survival among patients diagnosed in utero suggests that the pathophysiology in TOF/APVC is not due entirely to the aneurysmal dilation of the pulmonary arteries but may be related to right-sided cardiac dysfunction.

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