The aim of this study was to describe the clinical impact of management of coarctation of the aorta by transcatheter stent placement in the context of longer term management of systemic hypertension. In the long term, poor outlook associated with untreated coarctation of the aorta is likely to relate to uncontrolled systemic hypertension. Transcatheter stent placement to treat native and recurrent coarctation of the aorta is an established therapy in adolescents and adults. There remains confusion about longer term outcomes, particularly the relation between procedural success and improvement in blood pressure (BP) control. Improvement in lifelong systemic BP control after transcatheter stent placement remains unproved. Forty patients underwent transcatheter stent placement over a 10-year period (2001 to 2010) at the Yorkshire Heart Centre. The average age at the time of procedure was 25 years (range 14 to 57). There was a reduction in peak systolic gradient across the coarcted segment from 25 to <10 mm Hg in 35 of 39 patients. After stent placement, there was a significant improvement in systolic BP control at early and later follow-up (mean 155 mm Hg before the procedure and 134 mm Hg at 2.81-year follow-up, p <0.0001). There was 1 early procedural adverse event (stent embolization) and 1 late adverse event (lower limb claudication). In conclusion, transcatheter stent placement for the management of aortic coarctation is associated with a reduction in systolic BP that is maintained over the medium term. A significant minority of patients remain significantly hypertensive, and the best management strategy for this group of patients remains unclear.
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