Comparison of outcomes following thoracoscopic versus thoracotomy closure for persistent patent ductus arteriosus

Cardiol Young. 2020 Oct;30(10):1433-1438. doi: 10.1017/S1047951120002206. Epub 2020 Aug 5.


Background: Patent ductus arteriosus closure is traditionally performed by thoracotomy approach. Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery is a less frequently utilised alternative. We sought to compare elective surgical outcomes between the two methods via a single-centre retrospective cohort analysis.

Methods: All patients >3.2 kg undergoing surgical patent ductus arteriosus ligation at a single institution from 2000 to 2018 were retrospectively reviewed. Propensity matching for age, weight, diuretic usage, and preterm status was conducted to adjust for differences in baseline patient characteristics. Outcome measures included operative time, hospitalisation duration, post-operative complications, and re-operation.

Results: A total of 173 patients were included, 127 thoracoscopy and 46 thoracotomy. In the unmatched cohorts, no significant difference in closure success was found (94% thoracoscopy versus 100% thoracotomy, p = 0.192). Although median operative time was longer for thoracoscopy (87 versus 56 minutes, p < 0.001), hospitalisation duration was shorter (1.05 versus 2.41 days, p < 0.001), as was ICU stay (0.00 versus 0.75 days, p < 0.001). There were no significant differences in re-operation or complication rates, except chest tube placement (11% thoracoscopy versus 50% thoracotomy, p < 0.001). After matching (69 thoracoscopy versus 20 thoracotomy), these differences persisted, including median operative time (81 versus 56 minutes, p = 0.007; thoracoscopy versus thoracotomy), hospitalisation duration (1.25 versus 2.27 days, p < 0.001), and chest tube placement (17% versus 60%, p < 0.001). There remained no significant difference in complications or re-operations.

Conclusions: Thoracoscopic ligation was associated with shorter ICU and hospital stays and less frequent chest tube placement, but longer operative times. Other risks, including bleeding, chylothorax, and recurrent laryngeal nerve injury, were similar.

Keywords: minimally invasive surgery; patent ductus arteriosus ligation; video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery.

MeSH terms

  • Ductus Arteriosus, Patent* / surgery
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Ligation
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Thoracoscopy
  • Thoracotomy
  • Treatment Outcome