Surgical Relief of Aortic Insufficiency by Direct Operation on the Aortic Valve
The natural history of patients with aortic insufficiency and the previous experimental and clinical operations devised for its relief are reviewed.
Methods that have been used at the University of Virginia Hospital for treatment of aortic insufficiency are reported. These procedures include the release of the fixed valve leaflet and removal of calcium from it, aortic valve leaflet extension with suture of a small piece of compressed polyvinyl sponge or Teflon fabric to the edge of one of the leaflets, excision and replacement of a portion of the valve with a synthetic leaflet, and complete subcoronary replacement of the valve with a prosthesis. To relieve isolated rheumatic aortic insufficiency, an annulus has been constricted or a bicuspid aortic valve has been created. Insufficiency resulting from perforation of one or more valve leaflets by subacute bacterial endocarditis has been treated by closure of the perforations.
Nineteen patients underwent 21 operations for the correction of aortic insufficiency. All had been in, or were in, heart failure, and several had significant coronary artery disease or multivalvular disease. Eleven of the 19 patients are well or markedly improved. Eight died during or after the operative procedure.
It is concluded that a direct attack upon the insufficient aortic valve is the procedure of choice at the present time.
- © 1960 American Heart Association, Inc.