Glutaraldehyde-fixed autologous pericardium rarely calcifies or retracts, and it is a useful substitute for cardiac valve leaflets. Current understanding of aortic valve geometry provides good models for aortic leaflet design, and pericardial leaflet construction is illustrated in this article for bicuspid and tri-leaflet valves. Outcomes have been characterized by low valve-related complication rates, and results of recent series are encouraging. Perhaps sufficient data are available to consider autologous pericardial leaflet replacement in highly selected younger patients with irreparable leaflets and contraindications to warfarin.
Copyright © 2014 The Society of Thoracic Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.