Epidemiology, evaluation, and management of conduction disturbances after transcatheter aortic valve replacement

Prog Cardiovasc Dis. 2021 May-Jun:66:37-45. doi: 10.1016/j.pcad.2021.06.004.


Aortic stenosis is the most common valvulopathy requiring replacement by means of the surgical or transcatheter approach. Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) has quickly become a viable and often preferred treatment strategy compared to surgical aortic valve replacement. However, transcatheter heart valve system deployment not infrequently injures the specialized electrical system of the heart, leading to new conduction disorders including high-grade atrioventricular block and complete heart block (CHB) necessitating permanent pacemaker implantation (PPI), which may lead to deleterious effects on cardiac function and patient outcomes. Additional conduction disturbances (e.g., new-onset persistent left bundle branch block, PR/QRS prolongation, and transient CHB) currently lack clearly defined management algorithms leading to variable strategies among institutions. This article outlines the current understanding of the pathophysiology, patient and procedural risk factors, means for further risk stratification and monitoring of patients without a clear indication for PPI, our institutional approach, and future directions in the management and evaluation of post-TAVR conduction disturbances.

Keywords: Aortic stenosis; Bundle branch block; Heart block; Pacemaker; TAVR; Transcatheter aortic valve replacement.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials
  • Aortic Valve Stenosis / epidemiology
  • Aortic Valve Stenosis / physiopathology
  • Aortic Valve Stenosis / surgery*
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / diagnosis
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / epidemiology
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / physiopathology
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / therapy*
  • Cardiac Pacing, Artificial* / adverse effects
  • Heart Conduction System / physiopathology*
  • Heart Rate*
  • Humans
  • Pacemaker, Artificial*
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement / adverse effects*
  • Treatment Outcome