Impact of classic and paradoxical low flow on survival after aortic valve replacement for severe aortic stenosis

Marie-Annick Clavel, Maxime Berthelot-Richer, Florent Le Ven, Romain Capoulade, Abdellaziz Dahou, Jean G Dumesnil, Patrick Mathieu, Philippe Pibarot
Journal of the American College of Cardiology 2015 February 24, 65 (7): 645-53

BACKGROUND: Low flow (LF) can occur with reduced (classic) or preserved (paradoxical) left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF).

OBJECTIVES: The objective of this study was to compare outcomes of patients with low ejection fraction (LEF), paradoxical low flow (PLF), and normal flow (NF) after aortic valve replacement (AVR).

METHODS: We examined 1,154 patients with severe aortic stenosis (AS) who underwent AVR with or without coronary artery bypass grafting.

RESULTS: Among these patients, 206 (18%) had LEF as defined by LVEF of <50%; 319 (28%) had PLF as defined by LVEF of ≥50% but stroke volume indexed to body surface area (SVi) of ≤35 ml ∙ m(-2); and 629 (54%) had NF, as defined by LVEF of ≥50% and SVi of >35 ml ∙ m(2). Aortic valve area was lower in low flow/LVEF groups (LEF: 0.71 ± 0.20 cm(2) and PLF: 0.65 ± 0.23 cm(2) vs. NF: 0.77 ± 0.18 cm(2); p < 0.001). The 30-day mortality was higher (p < 0.001) in LEF and PLF groups than in the NF group (6.3% and 6.3% vs. 1.8%, respectively). SVi and PLF group were independent predictors of operative mortality (odds ratio [OR]: 1.18, p < 0.05; and OR: 2.97, p = 0.004; respectively). At 5 years after AVR, overall survival was 72 ± 4% in LEF group, 81 ± 2% in PLF group, and 85 ± 2% in NF group (p < 0.0001).

CONCLUSIONS: Patients with LEF or PLF AS have a higher operative risk, but pre-operative risk score accounted only for LEF and lower LVEF. Patients with LEF had the worst survival outcome, whereas patients with PLF and normal flow had similar survival rates after AVR. As a major predictor of perioperative mortality, SVi should be integrated in AS patients' pre-operative evaluation.

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