Individualized strategy of minimally invasive cardiac surgery in congenital cardiac septal defects

Jiaquan Zhu, Yunjiao Zhang, Chunrong Bao, Fangbao Ding, Ju Mei
Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery 2022 January 15, 17 (1): 5

BACKGROUND: Intracardiac septal defect is repaired using median sternotomy in most centers; however, there are several reports using minimally invasive surgery in both children and adults. This study summarized our strategy of minimally invasive therapy using various lateral mini-thoracotomies in patients with congenital septal defect.

METHODS: In this study, 472 patients who underwent minimally invasive repair of intracardiac septal defects (atrial septal defect, (ASD), ventricular septal defect, (VSD), and atrioventricular septal defect, (AVSD)) from January 2012 to June 2020 were retrospectively reviewed. Those who underwent device closure were excluded. The minimally invasive strategy included three groups: the right sub-axillary vertical incision (RSAVI) group (N = 335, including192 ASDs, 135 VSDs and 8 AVSDs); the right anterolateral thoracotomy (RALT) group (N = 132, including 77 ASDs, 51 VSDs and 4 AVSDs); and the left anterolateral thoracotomy (LALT) group (N = 5, all subpulmonary VSDs).

RESULTS: Concomitant surgeries included nine cases of right ventricular outflow tract obstruction relief, nine cases of mitral repairs and 37 cases of tricuspid repairs. There was one transition from thoracotomy to sternotomy. Three patients required second pump run for residual lesions (two residual VSD shunts and one mitral regurgitation). The age and body weight of the RSAVI group were significantly lower than those of the RALT and LALT groups (all P < 0.01). No postoperative death was observed. Postoperative complications included one case of chest exploration for bleeding, one case of reoperation due to patch dehiscence during the same admission, one case of transient neural dysfunction, three cases of diaphragmatic paresis and 13 cases of atelectasis. The median stay in the intensive care unit was two days, while the median postoperative hospitalization duration was six days. The echocardiography results before discharge indicated no significant residual lesions. No reoperation, no new onset of chest deformities and no sclerosis were observed during the follow-up.

CONCLUSIONS: Intracardiac septal defects can be safely and effectively repaired by minimally invasive surgery with good cosmetic results. RSAVI is suitable in infants and children, while RALT is more commonly used in adolescents and adults. LALT is an alternative incision to repair subpulmonary VSD.

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