Background and aim of the study: Outcomes after minimally invasive isolated tricuspid valve (TV) surgery have not been well described. Hence, an assessment was made of the authors' results for minimally invasive, isolated TV surgery.
Methods: Between September 2000 and January 2008, at the authors' institution, a total of 35 patients (15 males, 20 females; mean age 59.2 +/- 14.9 years) underwent isolated TV surgery for TV regurgitation, using a right lateral mini-thoracotomy. The preoperative left ventricular ejection fraction was 57 +/- 11%. The TV pathology included annular dilatation (n = 22), recurrent regurgitation after previous repair (n = 4), ruptured chordae (n = 4), endocarditis (n = 2), intracardiac tumor (n = 2), and blunt chest trauma (n = 1). Twenty patients had previously undergone a total of 30 cardiac operations, eight of which involved the TV.
Results: A TV repair was performed in 27 patients (77%), and involved the implantation of an annuloplasty ring in all cases. A leaflet repair was performed in addition to an annuloplasty in two patients, and eight patients underwent TV replacement. The hospital mortality was 5.7%, with two deaths due to low cardiac output syndrome on days 1 and 9 after surgery. The latter patient underwent reoperation on day 7 for recurrent TV regurgitation and a ventricular septal defect. Early and mid-term echocardiographic follow up revealed no TV regurgitation in 19 patients, but trivial and mild regurgitation each in eight patients. The mean follow up time was 35 +/- 40 months, and was 100% complete. A Kaplan-Meier analysis revealed an estimated five-year survival of 90% (95% CI: 73-97).
Conclusion: Isolated TV surgery can be performed through a minimally invasive approach, with good results. A high repair rate can be achieved, and the procedure has been particularly valuable in redo surgery.