Aims: A sizable group of patients with symptomatic aortic stenosis can undergo neither surgical aortic valve replacement nor transcatheter aortic valve implantation. The aim of this study was to assess the potential role of repeated balloon aortic valvuloplasty (BAV) in these patients.
Methods: Within our local prospective BAV registry, we retrospectively selected 105 patients who underwent ≥2 BAV procedures between 2005 and 2012 because of persisting contraindications to definitive treatment after first BAV. In-hospital outcome and incidence of adverse events at 1, 2, and 3 years were assessed. Mean age was 84 ± 6 years, mean logistic EuroSCORE was 23.6 ± 13.4%.
Results: No intraprocedural deaths occurred. In-hospital events for the 224 BAV procedures were: myocardial infarction, 4%; stroke, 0.9%; vascular complications, 8% (1.8% major); and bleedings, 5.9% (life threatening, 0.9%; major, 1.8%). Acute aortic regurgitation occurred in 6 cases and was always resolved during procedures. Median follow-up was 785 days. Second BAVs showed fewer vascular complications (P<.001) and bleedings (P<.001). Bleedings (odds ratio [OR], 6.88; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.58-29.88) and vascular complications (OR, 4.8; 95% CI, 1.19-19.31) occurring after the first procedure were independent predictors for subsequent adverse events. All-cause mortality at 1, 2, and 3 years was 15.2%, 41.3%, and 57.2%. Hospital readmission for heart failure was 40.7% at 1-year follow-up, 61.7% at 2-year follow-up, and 77.6% at 3-year follow-up.
Conclusion: BAV is associated with poor long-term clinical outcome. However, when no other therapeutic options are feasible, a strategy of repeated palliative BAV appears to be safe and is potentially associated with improved clinical outcomes.