Background: Isolated interruption of the inferior vena cava (IVC) is a rare anomaly. We report a series of 4 cases of isolated interruption of the IVC that coexisted with rheumatic mitral stenosis. Interrupted IVC precludes the use of the femoral approach to percutaneous transseptal mitral commissurotomy (PTMC). We describe the jugular approach to PTMC in such cases using conventional PTMC equipment.
Methods and results: The mean pre-PTMC mitral valve area was 0.85 cm². Septal puncture was done through the right internal jugular vein with a pediatric Brokenborough needle (Medtronic) using the levophase of pulmonary artery angiogram and the pigtail as guide. The mitral valve was crossed successfully in all cases and appropriately sized Accura balloons (Vascular Concepts) were used for incremental dilatations. Successful balloon dilatation was achieved in all 4 cases (mean post-PTMC mitral valve area of 1.85 cm²) with no complications.
Conclusion: The jugular approach appears to be a safe and effective alternative in cases of rheumatic mitral stenosis with IVC anomalies, thereby preventing an otherwise necessary surgery.