Low incidence of significant valvar insufficiency following retrograde aortic radiofrequency catheter ablation in young patients.J Interv Card Electrophysiol 1999; 3(2):181-5JI
The incidence of significant valvar insufficiency at late (<6 month) follow-up was retrospectively evaluated in 27 young patients (age 4. 0-18.0 years) undergoing 29 ablation procedures via the retrograde aortic approach for left-sided accessory connections in whom pre-ablation and post-ablation echocardiograms were available for review. Valvar insufficiency was graded using color flow techniques as absent, trivial, mild, moderate, or severe by blinded reviewers. Ablation was acutely successful via the retrograde approach in 25 of 29 procedures among these 27 patients. Successful ablation was ultimately achieved in all 27 patients. At baseline, 7 patients had evidence of trivial or mild mitral insufficiency, and no patient had aortic insufficiency. Three patients had evidence of impaired left ventricular systolic performance in the presence of manifest pre-excitation. At follow-up, pre-existing mitral insufficiency resolved in 5/7 patients, and persisted in 2 patients. New mitral insufficiency was evident in 3 patients, and new aortic insufficiency was transiently evident in 1 patient following ablation (all trivial). Institutional experience (mean rank 10 cases vs. 33 cases, p <.0005), and lower patient weight (29.7 vs. 56.3 kilograms, p =.01) were the only factors associated with the development of new valvar insufficiency. Valvar insufficiency could not be detected by careful auscultation in any patient and was deemed clinically insignificant in all patients. We conclude that ablation of left-sided accessory connections can be performed via the retrograde aortic approach without creating clinically significant valvar insufficiency.