Hemodynamic function of the standard St. Jude bileaflet disc valve has no clinical impact 10 years after aortic valve replacement

Ole Lund, Inge Dørup, Kristian Emmertsen, Finn T Jensen, Christian Flø
Scandinavian Cardiovascular Journal: SCJ 2005, 39 (4): 237-43

OBJECTIVES: Size mismatch and impaired left ventricular function have been shown to determine the hemodynamic function of the standard St. Jude bileaflet disc valve early after aortic valve replacement (AVR). We aimed to analyse St. Jude valve hemodynamic function and its clinical impact in the survivors of a prospective series 10 years after AVR for aortic stenosis.

DESIGN: Forty-three survivors aged 32-90 years from a prospective series attended a follow-up study with Doppler echo and radionuclide cardiography 10 years after AVR for aortic stenosis. Six patients with significant left sided valve regurgitation were excluded from further analysis: they had significantly lower St. Jude valve gradient and left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) and larger mass index (LVMi) than 37 without.

RESULTS: In the 37 patients without left sided valve regurgitation peak and mean gradients were inversely related to St. Jude valve geometric orifice area (GOA) indexed for either body surface area or left ventricular end-diastolic dimension (LVEDD). The gradients correlated directly with LVEDD but not with LVEF or LVMi. Eleven patients with hypertension had higher peak gradients (31+/-13 versus 22+/-8 mmHg, p<0.05), lower LVEF, and higher LVEDD and LVMi than 26 without. Peak gradient was greater than 35 mmHg in five hypertensive patients with normal LVEF but lesser than 30 mmHg in six with impaired LVEF. Supranormal LVEF and severe size mismatch identified the remaining patients (N=3) with peak gradient above 35 mmHg. In a multilinear regression analysis GOA indexed for LVEDD, hypertension, and LVEF were independently related to peak gradient.

CONCLUSION: High gradients of the standard St. Jude bileaflet disc valve 10 years after AVR was primarily related to systemic hypertension and mismatch between valve and left ventricular cavity size. Hypertension and left sided valve regurgitation, but not St. Jude valve gradient or size mismatch, were the dominant determinants of left ventricular hypertrophy and impaired function.


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