Impact of Pulmonary Valve Replacement on Ventricular Arrhythmias in Patients With Tetralogy of Fallot and Implantable Cardioverter-Defibrillator

JACC Clin Electrophysiol. 2021 Oct;7(10):1285-1293. doi: 10.1016/j.jacep.2021.02.022. Epub 2021 Apr 28.


Objectives: This study aimed to assess the impact of pulmonary valve replacement (PVR) on ventricular arrhythmias burden in a population of tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) patients with continuous cardiac monitoring by implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs).

Background: Sudden cardiac death is a major cause of death in TOF, and right ventricular overload is commonly considered to be a potential trigger for ventricular arrhythmias.

Methods: Data were analyzed from a nationwide French ongoing study (DAI-T4F) including all TOF patients with an ICD since 2000. Survival data with recurrent events were used to compare the burden of appropriate ICD therapies before and after PVR in patients who underwent PVR over the study period.

Results: A total of 165 patients (mean age 42.2 ± 13.3 years, 70.1% male) were included from 40 centers. Over a median follow-up period of 6.8 (interquartile range: 2.5 to 11.4) years, 26 patients (15.8%) underwent PVR. Among those patients, 18 (69.2%) experienced at least 1 appropriate ICD therapy. When considering all ICD therapies delivered before (n = 62) and after (n = 16) PVR, the burden of appropriate ICD therapies was significantly lower after PVR (HR: 0.21; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.08 to 0.56; p = 0.002). Respective appropriate ICD therapies rates per 100 person-years were 44.0 (95% CI: 35.7 to 52.5) before and 13.2 (95% CI: 7.7 to 20.5) after PVR (p < 0.001). In the overall cohort, PVR before ICD implantation was also independently associated with a lower risk of appropriate ICD therapy in primary prevention patients (HR: 0.29 [95% CI: 0.10 to 0.89]; p = 0.031).

Conclusions: In this cohort of high-risk TOF patients implanted with an ICD, the burden of appropriate ICD therapies was significantly reduced after PVR. While optimal indications and timing for PVR are debated, these findings suggest the importance of considering ventricular arrhythmias in the overall decision-making process. (French National Registry of Patients With Tetralogy of Fallot and Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator [DAI-T4F]; NCT03837574).

Keywords: implantable cardioverter defibrillator; pulmonary valve replacement; sudden death; tetralogy of Fallot; ventricular arrhythmia.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / therapy
  • Cardiac Surgical Procedures*
  • Defibrillators, Implantable*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pulmonary Valve* / surgery
  • Tetralogy of Fallot* / surgery

Associated data