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Am J Cardiol. 1997 Dec 1;80(11):1464-8.

Time-related trends in the preoperative evaluation of patients with valvular stenosis.

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Department of Cardiology, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Ohio 44195, USA.


To investigate time-related trends in the use of preoperative invasive hemodynamics in patients with pure valvular stenosis, the preoperative evaluations and preoperative echocardiograms of consecutive patients who underwent aortic or mitral valve surgery from 1986 to 1994 at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation were reviewed. The study group consisted of 1,985 patients, 1,476 with aortic stenosis and 509 with mitral stenosis. Preoperative cardiac catheterization was performed in 1,456 patients with aortic stenosis (99%) and 488 with mitral stenosis (96%). Measurement of invasive hemodynamics (including transvalvular gradients and estimated valve areas) during catheterization decreased over time both in patients with aortic (from 64% in 1986 to 30% in 1994, test for trend p <0.0001) and mitral stenosis (from 63% in 1986 to 18% in 1994, test for trend p <0.0001). After adjusting for age, gender, and other characteristics, the only predictors of performance of invasive hemodynamics in patients with aortic stenosis were more recent surgery (inverse relation, p = 0.0001) and New York Heart Association class (p = 0.01); in patients with mitral stenosis the only predictor was also more recent surgery (inverse relation, p = 0.0001). Thus, use of preoperative invasive hemodynamics in patients with valvular stenosis has markedly decreased over the last decade. This is an example of how a noninvasive modality can supercede an invasive one, even when surrounding a procedure as fundamentally invasive as valvular heart surgery.

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