Surgical repair of coarctation of the aorta: up to 40 years of follow-up

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OBJECTIVE: Coarctation of the aorta (CoA) was previously considered cured after surgical repair. Evidence for excess mortality and late morbidity has later accumulated, although studies with long-term follow-up remain sparse. The aim was to identify patients operated for CoA at Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark between 1965 and 1985 and to assess surgical and late mortality and cardiovascular morbidity in this cohort and possible predictors for an adverse outcome.

METHODS: Two hundred and twenty nine patients were identified. Baseline characteristics and morbidity and mortality data were obtained from medical records, registries and databases and analysed by Kaplan-Meier graphs and multivariate Cox regression analyses.

RESULTS: There were 14 (6%) surgical deaths. The survival in patients who were alive 30 days postoperatively was 95% 10 years after surgery, and 91%, 83% and 69% after 20, 30 and 40 years, respectively. The mortality rate ratio for all long-term survivors compared with an age- and sex-matched reference group was 4.3 (2.9-6.4). In those with no cardiovascular comorbidity at the time of repair, it was 3.4 (1.8-6.4). The causes of late deaths were cardiovascular in 63%. CoA repair in the early decade, age below 1 year at repair and high level of comorbidity were predictors for late mortality. Twenty five percent of current survivors were on antihypertensive medication and further cardiovascular morbidity had occurred in 46 (26%), including cardiovascular surgery and catheter interventions in 35 (19%). Freedom from death, reintervention and cardiovascular complications other than hypertension was 60% 30 years after surgery in the entire study population.

CONCLUSIONS: Repaired CoA is associated with excess cardiovascular mortality and morbidity and often in need of reintervention. These patients, therefore, need careful follow-up.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean journal of cardio-thoracic surgery : official journal of the European Association for Cardio-thoracic Surgery
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)910-6
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2006

    Research areas

  • Adolescent, Adult, Age Factors, Antihypertensive Agents/administration & dosage, Aortic Coarctation/mortality, Cause of Death, Child, Child, Preschool, Denmark/epidemiology, Drug Administration Schedule, Epidemiologic Methods, Female, Heart Defects, Congenital/surgery, Humans, Infant, Male, Middle Aged, Prognosis, Treatment Outcome

ID: 242780800