Protective effects of retrograde compared with antegrade cardioplegia on right ventricular systolic and diastolic function during coronary bypass surgery.
The effect of retrograde cardioplegia delivered through the right atrium on right ventricular performance has not been critically examined in humans. We randomized 20 patients with right coronary artery lesions to receive cold blood cardioplegia solution either retrograde through the right atrium (group 1, n = 10) or antegradely (group 2, n = 10). The patients were similar in age, sex, severity of coronary artery disease, cross-clamp time, and completeness of revascularization. Before operation, right ventricular function was assessed by radionuclide ventriculography, and 18-24 hours after operation, right ventricular volumes and performance were assessed at a constant-paced heart rate by simultaneous hemodynamic-radionuclide measurements, before and after a fluid challenge. Intraoperative right ventricular temperatures were not different between the groups. Right ventricular volumes and ejection fractions were not different at baseline. After operation, at similar heart rates and loading conditions, there was a trend for the antegrade group to increase right ventricular end-systolic volume (p less than 0.1) whereas the retrograde group had no change in this parameter from the preoperative state. Postoperative ventricular function curves (p = NS, retrograde versus antegrade) suggest equivalent systolic performance in both groups. Right ventricular diastolic performance showed no significant differences between the two groups, suggesting no detriment to compliance due to right ventricular distension during operation. This suggests that retrograde cardioplegia adequately protects the right ventricular myocardium during bypass surgery and may be used as an alternative procedure in situations where ventricular cooling is inadequate with antegrade delivery due to severe coronary artery disease or aortic valvular disease.
- Copyright © 1989 by American Heart Association