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Ann Thorac Surg. 2010 Sep;90(3):813-9; discussion 819-20. doi: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2010.03.110.

Contemporary patterns of management of tetralogy of Fallot: data from the Society of Thoracic Surgeons Database.

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The Montreal Children's Hospital of the McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.



The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Database was queried to ascertain current trends in management of tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) and to determine the prevalence of various surgical techniques.


The study population (n = 3059 operations) was all index operations in 2002-2007, age 0-18 years with Primary Diagnosis of TOF, and Primary Procedure TOF repair or palliation. Patients with Pulmonary Atresia, Absent Pulmonary Valve, and Atrioventricular Canal were excluded.


294 patients had initial palliation, including 178 neonates. 2534 patients had repair of TOF as the initial operation (primary repair), including 154 neonates. 217 patients had repair of TOF after prior palliation. Of patients who had primary repair (n = 2534), 975 had repair at 3 to 6 months, 614 at 6 months to 1 year, 492 at 1 to 3 months, and 154 at 0 to 30 days. Of patients who had repair following prior palliation (n = 217), 65 had repair in the first 6 months of life, 111 at 6 months to 1 year, and only 41 (18.9%) at more than 1 year of age. Type of repair: Of 2534 primary repairs, 581 (23%) had no ventriculotomy, 571 (23%) had nontransanular patch, 1329 (52%) had transanular patch, and 53 (2%) had right ventricle to pulmonary artery conduits. Of repairs after prior palliation (n = 217), 20 (9%) had no ventriculotomy, 30 (14%) had nontransanular patch, 144 (66%) had transanular patch, and 24 (11%) had conduits. Discharge mortality (95% confidence interval; CI) was 22 of 294 (7.5%; CI: 4.7%-11.1%) for initial palliation, 33 of 2534 (1.3%; CI: 0.9%-1.8%) for primary repair, and 2 of 217 (0.9%; CI: 0.1%-3.3%) for secondary repair. For neonates, discharge mortality was 11 of 178 (6.2%; CI: 3.1%-10.8%) for palliation and 12 of 154 (7.8%; CI: 4.1%-13.2%) for primary repair.


Primary repair in the first year of life is the most prevalent strategy. Despite contemporary awareness of the late consequences of pulmonary insufficiency, ventriculotomy with transanular patch remains the most prevalent technique, both for primary repair and for repair following palliation.

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