Congenital bicuspid aortic valve after age 20

Am J Cardiol. 1977 Feb;39(2):164-9. doi: 10.1016/s0002-9149(77)80186-0.


The bicuspid aortic valve is recognized as a frequent cause of aortic stenosis in adults. Aortic stenosis has been reported to occur in as many as 72 percent of adults with a congenital bicuspid aortic valve, with peak incidence occurring in the 5th and 6th decades of life. Review of the clinical records of 152 patients aged 20 years and older found to have a bicuspid aortic valve at autopsy revealed aortic stenosis in only 28 percent. The incidence of aortic stenosis increased progressively with age; 46 percent of patients over age 50 years and 73 percent over age 70 years had some degree of stenosis. The stenotic valves were obstructed by nodular, calcareous masses but commissural fusion was present in only eight cases. The largest group of patients in the series (40 percent) died of infective endocarditis; 77 percent of these were under age 50 years. Primary aortic regurgitation without infective endocarditis was uncommon. Thirty-two percent of the patients in this series had an apparently normally functioning aortic valve, and this rate remained relatively constant with increasing age; 37 percent of patients over age 50 years and 27 percent over age 70 years had an apparently normal valve. The bicuspid aortic valve in patients over age 20 does not invariably become stenotic or insufficient.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aortic Coarctation / complications
  • Aortic Valve / abnormalities*
  • Aortic Valve / pathology
  • Aortic Valve Insufficiency / complications
  • Aortic Valve Insufficiency / etiology*
  • Aortic Valve Stenosis / complications
  • Aortic Valve Stenosis / epidemiology
  • Aortic Valve Stenosis / etiology*
  • Calcinosis / complications
  • Endocarditis, Bacterial / complications
  • Female
  • Heart Aneurysm / complications
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / complications
  • Retrospective Studies