Life expectancy without surgery in tetralogy of Fallot

Am J Cardiol. 1978 Sep;42(3):458-66. doi: 10.1016/0002-9149(78)90941-4.


All published autopsy cases of patients with tetralogy of Fallot who died without surgical treatment were studied to determine the life expectancy of such persons. In addition, the data from a study of persons with tetralogy alive in Denmark in 1949 were reanalyzed. The survival data from these two sources were remarkably similar, indicating that 66 percent of persons with tetralogy of Fallot not treated surgically live to age 1 year, 49 percent to age 3 years and 24 percent to age 10 years; thereafter, the hazard function (or instantaneous risk of death) remains constant. The chance of survival is significantly less when pulmonary atresia, rather than stenosis, is present.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Life Expectancy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Statistics as Topic
  • Tetralogy of Fallot / mortality*