Background and aim of the study: The prevalence of severe pulmonary hypertension (PH) in patients with severe mitral stenosis (MS) remains unknown, and the long-term effect of mitral balloon valvotomy (MBV) in large numbers of these patients is not well characterized.
Methods: Details from the prospective MBV database at the authors' institution relating to 559 consecutive patients who had successful MBV were analyzed. Patients were allocated to three groups on the basis of their pulmonary artery systolic pressure (PASP) at cardiac catheterization immediately before MBV: group A (n = 345) had PASP <50 mmHg; group B (n = 183) had PASP 50-79 mmHg; and group C (n = 31) had PASP > or =80 mmHg. Patients were evaluated clinically and echocardiographically at six months after MBV, and annually thereafter for up to 13 years.
Results: No mortality was encountered after MBV. Immediately after MBV, the mean PASP was 38.5+/-6.8 mmHg in group A (mild PH), 59.0+/-7.7 mmHg in group B (moderately severe PH), and 97.8+/-17.0 mmHg in group C (severe PH). At follow up (ca. 4 years), Doppler-monitored PASP fell to normal, and was similar in groups A, B and C (29+/-8, 31+/-9, and 29+/-5 mmHg, respectively; p = NS).
Conclusion: MBV was shown to be safe and effective in treating patients with MS and severe PH. The latter condition regressed to normal levels over 6-12 months after successful MBV.