Clinical experience with the 3F stentless aortic bioprosthesis: one-year follow up

J Linneweber, C Kossagk, M L Rogge, S Dushe, P Dohmen, W Konertz
Journal of Heart Valve Disease 2006, 15 (4): 545-8

BACKGROUND AND AIM OF THE STUDY: The 3F equine aortic bioprosthesis is a new stentless valve which is currently undergoing evaluation in a multicenter clinical trial and is considered to have superior hemodynamic performance. Herein is reported the authors' initial experience with the 3F valve, focusing on the hemodynamic performance of the device.

METHODS: Between March 2002 and October 2003, 35 patients (age range 61-86 years) underwent aortic valve replacement with the 3F valve implanted in the subcoronary position. Evaluation of valve hemodynamic performance was assessed at discharge (postoperative day 5 +/- 2), at 3-6 months, and at 11-14 months' follow up by means of transthoracic echocardiography. The mean preoperative transvalvular pressure gradient was 63 +/- 14 mmHg. Before surgery, all patients were in NYHA class III or IV, despite aggressive medical treatment. Five patients underwent concomitant coronary artery bypass grafting.

RESULTS: The implanted valve sizes ranged from 21 to 29 mm. There were no operative deaths and no major perioperative complications. After 12 months, mean pressure gradients for the 23-, 25-, 27- and 29-mm valves were 13, 13, 12 and 9 mmHg, respectively. Mean systolic pressure gradients and NYHA class were improved significantly after surgery. Mild signs of hemolysis and minimal central regurgitation were detected in some patients, but were of no clinical importance. Valve dysfunction or mechanical failure did not occur during the follow up period.

CONCLUSION: Because of its flexible structure, the 3F aortic bioprosthesis is simple to implant, and no major adverse effects have been associated with such valve implantation at the authors' center. Transprosthetic gradients appeared to regress at 6-12 months' follow up. The durability of the device is yet to be established in ongoing long-term trials.

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