Natural History of Rheumatic Aortic Regurgitation
Criteria Predictive of Death, Congestive Heart Failure, and Angina in Young Patients
The medical courses of 174 young patients with aortic regurgitation were followed prospectively for a median of 10 years. The data were analyzed by life-table methods; congestive failure and angina, as well as death, were considered as end points, since the occurrence of the former is considered sufficient indication for aortic valve replacement. Thirty-one patients developed the triad of moderate or marked left ventricular enlargement, two or three electrocardiographic abnormalities, and abnormal blood pressure. Thirty-three percent of these patients either died or had failure or angina within 1 year, 48% within 2 years, 65% within 3 years, and 87% within 6 years from the acquisition of the triad. The 71 patients with none of the above features had uneventful courses. Of the 71 patients with one or two features only seven either died (three) or became symptomatic. These data are useful for patient selection for surgery before symptoms appear.
- Received September 23, 1970.
- Accepted April 28, 1971.
- © 1971 American Heart Association, Inc.