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You are here: Contents > 2015 > Volume 24 Number 3 May 2015 > AORTIC VALVE DISEASE > Aortic Valve Replacement in Patients with End-Stage Liver Disease: A Modified Perfusion Concept in High-Risk Patients

Aortic Valve Replacement in Patients with End-Stage Liver Disease: A Modified Perfusion Concept in High-Risk Patients

Sven Peterss1, Erik Beckmann1, Rohan Bhandari2, Johannes Hadem3, Christian Hagl1, Nawid Khaladj1, Axel Haverich1, Ingo Kutschka1

1Department of Cardiothoracic, Transplantation and Vascular Surgery, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany, 2Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA, 3Department of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Endocrinology, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany

Background and aim of the study: Cardiac surgery with the use of cardiopulmonary bypass in patients with end-stage liver disease is associated with a high risk of postoperative morbidity and mortality due to bleeding, and a high incidence of bacterial infection with associated secondary complications. Minimized extracorporeal perfusion circuits (MECCs) with a lower priming volume, reduced foreign surface area, and interdisciplinary preoperative and postoperative treatment may address these negative effects and improve patient outcomes. The study aim was to evaluate the feasibility of the MECC and optimized supportive therapy in patients with advanced-stage liver cirrhosis.

Methods: Seven consecutive male patients (median age 56 years; range 54-67 years) with hepatic cirrhosis (Child-Pugh score B, median Model of End-stage Liver Disease (MELD) score 14; range 8-26) underwent aortic valve replacement (AVR) using MECC. Supportive preoperative and postoperative management included digestive decontamination, antioxidant

supplements, and adjusted anti-infective therapy.

Results: All patients survived the hospital course, with 30-, 60-, and 90-day mortality of 0%. The median intensive care unit and in-hospital lengths of stay were 3 days (range: 1-5 days) and 13 days (range: 5-18 days), respectively. One patient required re-exploration due to bleeding, and another suffered from a seizure without permanent neurologic deficits. No patient required new-onset hemodialysis. At a median follow up of 22 months (range: 2-46 months) all patients were alive but displayed only minor improvements in cardiac symptoms (median NYHA class III (range: II-III) at baseline versus II (range: II-III) postoperatively) and hepatic symptoms.

Conclusion: Conventional AVR in patients with advanced-stage liver cirrhosis using MECC and optimal medical treatment is feasible. Further studies are required to evaluate the impact of alternative interventional techniques in this high-risk cohort.

The Journal of Heart Valve Disease 2015;24:302-309

Aortic Valve Replacement in Patients with End-Stage Liver Disease: A Modified Perfusion Concept in High-Risk Patients

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