Transfemoral implantation of Edwards Sapien XT aortic valve without previous valvuloplasty: role of 2D/3D transesophageal echocardiography

Eulogio García, Carlos Almería, Leire Unzué, Pilar Jiménez-Quevedo, Ana Cuadrado, Carlos Macaya
Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions 2014 November 15, 84 (6): 868-76

BACKGROUND: Balloon valvuloplasty (BAV) has been considered a mandatory step before TAVI. However, it might be related to cerebrovascular microembolizations, atrioventricular conduction disturbances, and hemodynamic instability. The aim of this study is to describe transesophageal echocardiography characteristics of patients that could benefit from direct transfemoral transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) of Edwards SAPIEN XT, without previous BAV.

METHODS AND RESULTS: A total of 16 patients with direct implantation of an Edwards SAPIEN XT valve are included. Preprocedural echocardiographic findings were exhaustively analyzed and described. From 32 patients elected for transfemoral TAVI with an Edwards SAPIEN XT, 16 of them (50%) were selected for direct implantation using the Edwards SAPIEN XT valve of size 23 mm (n = 5), 26 mm (n = 8), or 29 mm (n = 3). Patients selection for direct TAVI presented three echocardiographic conditions: central effective orifice, moderate to severe calcification of the aortic valve apparatus preserving leaflets movement, and symmetric distribution of calcium with absent to moderate central aortic regurgitation. Mean age was 81.4 ± 7.4, 75% female, with a mean logistic Euroscore 18.2 ± 11.2. Preprocedural mean valve gradient was 43.6 ± 16.3. Mean effective orifice area was 0.7 ± 0.2. There was no valve embolization and the success rate was 100%. Postdilation was performed in one patient (6.25%). New permanent pacing was needed in two patients (12.5%).

CONCLUSIONS: TAVI without previous BAV is feasible and safe. 2D/3D TEE is an essential tool to select the patients that could benefit from this technique.

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