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J Heart Valve Dis. 2011 Jan;20(1):75-82.

Triple-valve surgery: clinical results of a three-decade experience.

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Department of Surgery, Montreal Heart Institute and University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada.



Triple-valve disease is a challenge that surgeons face periodically, yet the clinical benefits of triple-valve surgery, in relation to the high operative risk, are not well known. The study aims were to describe the early and late mortality associated with triple-valve surgery, to assess the risk factors, and describe the long-term outcomes.


A retrospective analysis of 178 consecutive triple-valve surgeries performed at the Montreal Heart Institute between 1977 and 2008 was performed. The median follow up was 5.0 years (inter-quartile range: 1.6 to 9.4 years).


Among 170 patients (122 females, 48 males; mean age 60 +/- 11 years), the preoperative NYHA functional class was > or = III/IV in 93% of cases; 61% of the patients had undergone previous cardiac surgery. The operative mortality was 12% between 1999 and 2008, and 25% between 1977 and 1998 (p = 0.033). Independent risk factors between 1999 and 2008 period included tricuspid regurgitation severity (OR = 13.71; p = 0.03) and the presence of a right intraventricular pacemaker lead (OR = 11.25; p = 0.039). Survival rates at five and 10 years were 61 +/- 4% and 38 +/- 5%, respectively. A lower left ventricular ejection fraction at discharge was associated with a poor late survival, independent of patient age and gender (OR = 0.95; p = 0.035). Twenty-three patients (18%) required reoperation during the follow up period, at which time the NYHA functional class was improved compared to baseline (p < 0.001).


Although triple-valve surgery is associated with substantial operative mortality, this situation has improved significantly over the years. Currently, survivors experience a significant improvement in their cardiac functional capacity, justifying the continued use of triple-valve procedures, though preferably earlier during the course of the disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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