Objective: The contemporary risk of reoperative aortic valve replacement is ill-defined. We therefore compared the recent early results of reoperative and primary aortic valve replacement in our institution.
Methods: Between January 1993 and January 2001, a total of 162 patients underwent reoperative aortic valve replacement with or without coronary artery bypass grafting, and 2290 underwent primary aortic valve replacement with or without coronary artery bypass grafting. The reoperative and primary groups were similar with regard to gender (37% female in both), preoperative New York Heart Association functional class (2.8 +/- 1 vs 2.8 +/- 1), and ejection fraction (58% +/- 15% vs 57% +/- 15%). Patients undergoing reoperative aortic valve replacement were younger than those undergoing primary aortic valve replacement (64 +/- 15 years vs 70 +/- 13 years, P < .001). Previous prostheses were xenografts in 77 patients (48%), homografts and autografts in 25 (15%), and mechanical prostheses in 60 (37%). Mean time to reoperation was 9.7 +/- 6.8 years.
Results: Early mortality for reoperative aortic valve replacement (8/162, 5%) was not statistically different from that for primary aortic valve replacement (71/2290, 3%, P = .20). Endocarditis was more common in the reoperative group (22% vs 3%, P < .001); when endocarditis was excluded from the analysis, early mortality was 3% in both groups. Multivariate predictors for early mortality were prosthetic valve endocarditis ( P < .001, odds ratio 9.8), advanced preoperative functional class ( P < .001, odds ratio 2.0), peripheral vascular disease ( P = .008, odds ratio 2.0), preserved left ventricular ejection fraction ( P = .004, odds ratio 0.98), and male gender ( P = .009, odds ratio 0.49). After adjustment for these factors, there was no difference in early mortality between the groups ( P = .095).
Conclusion: The risk of reoperative aortic valve replacement is similar to that for primary aortic valve replacement. These data support the expanded use of bioprosthetic valves in younger patients.