Primary isolated aortic valve surgery in octogenarians

Ferrari, Enrico ; Tozzi, Piergiorgio ; Hurni, Michel ; Ruchat, Patrick ; Stumpe, Frank ; von Segesser, Ludwig K.

In: European Journal of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery, 2010, vol. 38, no. 2, p. 128-133

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    Objectives: We reviewed our surgery registry, to identify predictive risk factors for operative results, and to analyse the long-term survival outcome in octogenarians operated for primary isolated aortic valve replacement (AVR). Methods: A total of 124 consecutive octogenarians underwent open AVR from January 1990 to December 2005. Combined procedures and redo surgery were excluded. Selected variables were studied as risk factors for hospital mortality and early neurological events. A follow-up (FU; mean FU time: 77 months) was obtained (90% complete), and Kaplan-Meier plots were used to determine survival rates. Results: The mean age was 82±2.2 (range: 80-90 years; 63% females). Of the group, four patients (3%) required urgent procedures, 10 (8%) had a previous myocardial infarction, six (5%) had a previous coronary angioplasty and stenting, 13 patients (10%) suffered from angina and 59 (48%) were in the New York Heart Association (NYHA) class III-IV. We identified 114 (92%) degenerative stenosis, six (5%) post-rheumatic stenosis and four (3%) active endocarditis. The predicted mortality calculated by logistic European System for Cardiac Operative Risk Evaluation (EuroSCORE) was 12.6±5.7%, and the observed hospital mortality was 5.6%. Causes of death included severe cardiac failure (four patients), multi-organ failure (two) and sepsis (one). Complications were transitory neurological events in three patients (2%), short-term haemodialysis in three (2%), atrial fibrillation in 60 (48%) and six patients were re-operated for bleeding. Atrio-ventricular block, myocardial infarction or permanent stroke was not detected. The age at surgery and the postoperative renal failure were predictors for hospital mortality (p value ≪0.05), whereas we did not find predictors for neurological events. The mean FU time was 77 months (6.5 years) and the mean age of surviving patients was 87±4 years (81-95 years). The actuarial survival estimates at 5 and 10 years were 88% and 50%, respectively. Conclusions: Our experience shows good short-term results after primary isolated standard AVR in patients more than 80 years of age. The FU suggests that aortic valve surgery in octogenarians guarantees satisfactory long-term survival rates and a good quality of life, free from cardiac re-operations. In the era of catheter-based aortic valve implantation, open-heart surgery for AVR remains the standard of care for healthy octogenarians