Intraoperative device closure of atrial septal defects with minimal transthoracic invasion: a single-center experience

Peng Zhu, Yong Sun, Qian Yang, Feng Qiu
Texas Heart Institute Journal 2013, 40 (3): 256-60
Atrial septal defect is one of the most common congenital heart defects. Open-heart repair via midline sternotomy or right thoracotomy and cardiopulmonary bypass has been considered the standard treatment for the closure of atrial septal defects, but transcatheter closure with the Amplatzer septal occluder has recently become a viable option. We have adopted a 3rd alternative: intraoperative device closure with minimal transthoracic invasion. From May 2007 through June 2011, 250 patients with secundum atrial septal defect underwent cardiac surgery at our institution. Open-heart repair with cardiopulmonary bypass was performed in 72 patients, and intraoperative device closure was performed in 178 patients. This minimally invasive approach, which required a full evaluation of the atrial septal defect by transthoracic echocardiography, was performed by deploying the device through the delivery sheath to occlude the atrial septal defect. The approach was successful in 175 of the 178 patients. The size of the implanted occluder ranged from 12 to 46 mm in diameter. Minor complications included transient arrhythmias (n=7) and pleural effusion (n=25). After complete release, the intraoperative occluder device dislodged in the right atrium in 3 patients, who then underwent immediate surgical repair with cardiopulmonary bypass. All discharged patients were monitored for 2.3 years to 5 years. As monotherapy, intraoperative device closure of atrial septal defect with minimal transthoracic invasion is a safe and feasible technique. It is particularly beneficial for elderly patients or patients with pulmonary hypertension and is associated with better cosmetic results and less trauma than is surgical closure.

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