Hypoplastic left heart syndrome is a congenital defect typically treated by implanting a conduit between the right ventricle and pulmonary artery in infants. Contemporary commercial conduits are normally flexible and don’t have much structural strength. Now a newly developed conduit that has built-in reinforced rings has been trialed in 39 patients, resulting in improved survival from the surgery, as well as after a one year followup. Moreover, fewer additional procedures were necessary in infants with the reinforced implants, thanks to lower rates of stenosis and improved continuous blood flow, and the pulmonary arteries in these children grew faster than in the control group.
Findings from the study abstract:
No difference was found in transplant-free survival by age 12 months (87% ring-reinforced vs 73% nonreinforced,P = .12). The group with the nonreinforced, versus ring-reinforced, grafts had more interventions in the first year (69% vs 35%, respectively; P < .01). Before stage 2, the pulmonary artery pulse pressure was greater in the group with ring-reinforced grafts (9.1 ± 4.1 vs 4.8 ± 3.1 mm Hg, P < .001), with no difference in mean pressure (15.2 ± 3.32 vs 14.3 ± 3.48 mm Hg, P = .27). The corrected pulmonary artery index (Nakata) was greater in the group with ring-reinforced grafts (213 ± 76 vs 134 ± 68 mm2/m2, P < .0001).
Study in Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery: A reinforced right-ventricle-to-pulmonary-artery conduit for the stage-1 Norwood procedure improves pulmonary artery growth…