Is surgical intervention still indicated in recurrent aortic arch obstruction?

Joy Zoghbi, Alain Serraf*, Siamak Mohammadi, Emré Belli, François Lacour Gayet, B. Aupecle, J. Losay, J. Petit, Claude Planché, Carl L. Backer, Zahid Amin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Introduction of balloon dilatation has become the standard treatment for recurrent aortic arch obstruction and has changed the therapeutic approach to patients with this disorder. Objectives: Whether all patients with recurrent aortic arch obstruction are candidates for balloon dilatation remains unanswered. In addition, only few reports have tried to compare the results between patients undergoing balloon dilatation or redo operations. Methods: Since 1983, 97 patients underwent reintervention for recurrent aortic arch obstruction (42 dilations and 55 reoperations). Eight had immediate unsuccessful dilatation and were shifted to the surgical group (n = 63). The median age at reintervention was 21.7 months (10 days-45 years), and the median delay was 13.6 months (7 days-17 years). Anatomy of the aortic arch oriented the surgical approach to treat arch hypoplasia. It could be performed through a left thoracotomy in 52 patients, with extended end-to-end anastomosis in 34 patients, subclavian flap repair in 9 patients, conduit insertion in 6 patients, and patch enlargement in 3 patients. More recently, an anterior approach with cardiopulmonary bypass without circulatory arrest was applied to enlarge the patch in all the aortic arches. Results: There was one early death in the surgical intervention group and 2 late deaths in the dilation group. Major complications and recurrence were higher in the dilated group (4 vs 0, P < .01, and 14 vs 5, P < .0004, respectively). At a mean follow-up of 11.8 ± 4.1 years in the surgical intervention group and 7.5 ± 2.5 years in the dilated group, systemic hypertension was normalized in all but 5 patients in the surgical intervention group and 6 patients in the dilated group. Conclusion: Reoperation for recurrent aortic arch obstruction can be performed safely, with low rates of mortality and morbidity. This approach should be considered versus balloon angioplasty, especially in patients older than 4 years and in the presence of aortic arch hypoplasia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-211
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2004
Externally publishedYes


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