Outcomes of truncal valve replacement in neonates and infants: a meta-analysis

Cardiol Young. 2023 May;33(5):673-680. doi: 10.1017/S1047951123000604. Epub 2023 Mar 27.


Background: Infants with truncus arteriosus typically undergo repair by repurposing the truncal valve as the neo-aortic valve and using a valved conduit homograft for the neo-pulmonary valve. In cases where the native truncal valve is too insufficient for repair, it is replaced, but this is a rare occurrence with a paucity of data, especially in the infant population. Here, we conduct a meta-analysis to better understand the outcomes of infant truncal valve replacement during the primary repair of truncus arteriosus.

Methods: We systematically reviewed PubMed, Scopus, and CINAHL for all studies reporting infant (<12 months) truncus arteriosus outcomes between 1974 and 2021. Exclusion criteria were studies which did not report truncal valve replacement outcomes separately. Data extracted included valve replacement type, mortality, and reintervention. Our primary outcome was early mortality, and our secondary outcomes were late mortality and reintervention rates.

Results: Sixteen studies with 41 infants who underwent truncal valve replacement were included. The truncal valve replacement types were homografts (68.8%), mechanical valves (28.1%), and bioprosthetic valves (3.1%). Overall early mortality was 49.4% (95% CI: 28.4-70.5). The pooled late mortality rate was 15.3%/year (95% CI: 5.8-40.7). The overall rate of truncal valve reintervention was 21.7%/year (95% CI: 8.4-55.7).

Conclusions: Infant truncal valve replacement has poor early and late mortality as well as high rates of reintervention. Truncal valve replacement therefore remains an unsolved problem in congenital cardiac surgery. Innovations in congenital cardiac surgery, such as partial heart transplantation, are required to address this.

Keywords: Truncus arteriosus; truncal valve insufficiency; truncal valve intervention; truncal valve replacement.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review
  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aortic Valve
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Heart Defects, Congenital* / surgery
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Truncus Arteriosus, Persistent* / surgery

Supplementary concepts

  • Conotruncal cardiac defects