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J Am Coll Cardiol. 2002 Aug 21;40(4):789-95.

Severe pulmonary hypertension in patients with severe aortic valve stenosis: clinical profile and prognostic implications.

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Division of Cardiovascular Diseases and Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota 55905, USA.



We analyzed the clinical characteristics and outcomes of 47 patients with severe pulmonary hypertension (PHT) and severe aortic valve stenosis (AS) from 1987 to 1999.


The prognostic implications of severe pulmonary hypertension in patients with severe AS are poorly understood.


The mean age of patients was 78 years (range 47 to 91 years), and 37 patients (79%) were in New York Heart Association (NYHA) functional class III or IV. Aortic valve replacement (AVR) was performed in 37 patients (79%) and 10 patients (21%) were treated conservatively.


In the group that had AVR, there were six perioperative deaths (16%) and nine late deaths, resulting in a total mortality of 32%. In the conservatively treated group, there were eight deaths (80%) on follow-up. Severe PHT was an independent predictor of perioperative mortality. However, perioperative mortality was independent of the severity of left ventricular systolic dysfunction or concomitant coronary artery bypass grafting. Aortic valve replacement was associated with significant improvement in left ventricular ejection fraction, the severity of PHT and NYHA functional class. The difference between long-term survival of the operative survivors and the expected survival from life tables was not statistically significant.


The prognosis for patients with AS and severe PHT treated conservatively without AVR is dismal. Although AVR is associated with higher than usual mortality, the potential benefits outweigh the risk of surgery.

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