The fate of the bicuspid valve aortopathy after aortic valve replacement

Efstratios I. Charitos*, Ulrich Stierle, Michael Petersen, Salah A. Mohamed, Thorsten Hanke, Claudia Schmidtke, Stefan Klotz, Hans Hinrich Sievers

*Corresponding author for this work
24 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVES: The fate of the aortic dimensions in patients with a bicuspid aortic valve (BAV) after aortic valve replacement (AVR) is unclear. We investigated the evolution of aortic root and ascending aorta dimensions in patients with a BAV after AVR. To neutralize the effect of pathological transvalvular haemodynamics on aortic dimensions, we evaluated our hypotheses in patients with normal transvalvular haemodynamics after a subcoronary autograft procedure, which preserves intact the native aortic wall. METHODS: We excluded patients operated on for endocarditis; who developed autograft insufficiency > trivial and who required autograft reoperation during the follow-up. We included 448 patients (361 with BAV; 340 males; 44.6 ± 11.4 years; mean follow-up: 7.5 ± 3.9 years). Valve phenotype was determined during surgery. Annual echocardiographic examinations (n = 3336) were performed (follow-up completeness: 98%). To allow for somatometric, gender and age influences, z-values of measurements were calculated from the general population (GP) and analysed using longitudinal methods. RESULTS: The increase in ascending aorta did not differ from that expected in the GP (0.04 z-values/year; P = 0.06). No difference could be observed in diameter increase rates between BAV and tricuspid aortic valve patients (TAV) (0.04 vs 0.06 z-values/year; P = 0.3), as well as between BAV phenotypes. The sinus increase did not differ from that expected in the GP (0.03 z-values/year; P = 0.1), and no significant differences could be observed between BAV phenotypes. In patients undergoing aortoplasty (n = 70), no significant difference in the rates of ascending aorta and sinus increase could be observed, compared with the GP. CONCLUSION: For the time period of this study and in patients with normal aortic root haemodynamics after AVR, ascending aorta dimensions over time are similar to that of the matched GP. Patients with a BAV did not exhibit higher rates of ascending aorta dilatation after AVR than patients with TAV. At least for the first postoperative decade, transvalvular haemodynamics appear to exhibit a greater influence than the genetic component of BAV on the development of the BAV aortopathy.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberezt666
JournalEuropean Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 01.01.2014


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