Thirty-six children aged 6 months to 18 years, underwent insertion of 37 St. Jude Medical cardiac prostheses. In 20, the valve was placed in the aortic or mitral position, and in 16 in the pulmonary or tricuspid position. There was one (2.8%) hospital death. All patients received maintenance doses of salicylates and dipyridamole after the operation. Follow-up data are available for all patients for 12 to 24 postoperative months. There was no incidence of valve dysfunction or thromboembolic complication in any of the 20 patients with valves in the systemic (left) side of the circulation, and all manifested improvement in their functional class. In contrast, six (37%) of the 16 patients with valves in the pulmonary (right) side of the circulation developed dysfunction of the prosthesis 1 to 6 months after insertion. Prosthesis failure was associated with fibrous tissue growing into the struts, leading to leaflet immobilization. At 2 years, the actuarial functional life was 100% for mitral and aortic valves and 70% for pulmonary and tricuspid valves. The data illustrate the excellent hemodynamic function of the St. Jude Medical valve in children. The absence of thromboembolic complications warrant continued implantation of the prosthesis in the left side without warfarin anticoagulation therapy, but the high incidence of valve dysfunction in the pulmonary position does not justify its continued use in the right side.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine