Objectives: To compare survival in patients with inoperable aortic stenosis who undergo transcatheter aortic valve implantation against those managed medically.
Background: Without surgical correction, survival of patients with severe symptomatic aortic stenosis is poor. It is unknown whether patients undergoing transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) have a better prognosis than similar patients who are treated with medical management.
Methods: Survival rates were compared in consecutive patients with severe symptomatic aortic stenosis who either underwent TAVI or continued on medical management following multidisciplinary team assessment. All patients had been turned down, or considered at unacceptably high risk, for conventional aortic valve surgery. Patients were reviewed in clinic or by telephone six monthly. Mortality data was obtained from the United Kingdom Office of National Statistics.
Results: The study group included 85 patients aged 81 +/- 7 years (range 62-94), of whom 48 were male. Thirty eight patients underwent TAVI while 47 patients were deemed unsuitable based on echocardiographic, angiographic, or clinical criteria and remained on medical therapy. The calculated EuroSCORE for the TAVI group was 11 +/- 2 and for the medical group 9 +/- 2 (P < 0.001). TAVI-related procedural mortality was 2.6%, and 30-day mortality was 5.2%. Among the medically-treated patients, 14 (30%) underwent palliative balloon aortic valvuloplasty, with a trend toward improved survival (P = 0.06). During overall follow-up of 215 +/- 115 days there were a total of 18 deaths; TAVI N = 5 (13%); Medical N = 13 (28%) (P = 0.04).
Conclusions: Patients with severe aortic valve disease who are not suitable for surgical aortic valve replacement have an improved prognosis if treated with transcatheter aortic valve implantation rather than continuing on medical management alone.