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Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2011 Sep;40(3):571-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ejcts.2010.10.023. Epub 2010 Dec 4.

Clinical outcome and health-related quality of life after right-ventricular-outflow-tract reconstruction with an allograft conduit.

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Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.



Allograft conduits are used for reconstruction of the right ventricular outflow tract in congenital heart malformations (biventricular repair) and autograft procedures. A retrospective evaluation of allograft reconstruction of the right-ventricular-outflow-tract reconstruction was conducted and a cross-sectional quality of life study was performed.


Between August 1986 and March 2009, 509 allografts (435 pulmonary and 74 aortic) were implanted in 463 pediatric and adult patients (308 right-sided congenital heart malformations and 155 autograft procedures). Perioperative and follow-up data were collected and analyzed. Kaplan-Meier analyses were done for survival, valve-related re-operation, and valve-related events. Cox regression analysis was used for evaluation of potential risk factors. In addition, the Short Form-36 was presented to patients to assess the perceived quality of life. The results of the Short Form-36 were compared to age-adjusted Dutch population norms.


The mean age at allograft implantation was 19 years (1 week-66 years). Mean follow-up was 9 years (2 days-22 years). Forty-eight patients died during follow-up. Patient survival was 93% at 10 years and 88% at 15 years. A total of 63 re-operations were required for allograft dysfunction in 58 patients. Freedom from valve-related re-operation was 89% at 10 years and 81% at 15 years. Freedom from valve-related events was 86% at 10 years and 74% at 15 years. Younger patient age (p=0.007) and the use of an aortic allograft (p<0.001) were identified as independent risk factors for allograft re-operation. Patients between 14 and 40 years scored significantly lower on 'physical functioning' and 'general health' subscales than the general Dutch population, but scored better on the subscales 'emotional role functioning' and 'bodily pain'. Except for the subscale 'general health', on which patients within our study population scored lower, patients between 41 and 60 years had comparable average scores as the general Dutch population. The older patient group (61 years or older) had a better average score on the subscale 'bodily pain' and similar scores on other subscales with respect to the general Dutch population.


Right-ventricular-outflow-tract reconstruction with an allograft conduit can be performed with good patient survival, acceptable long-term allograft durability, and good perceived quality of life.

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