Sustained ventricular tachycardia in adult patients late after repair of tetralogy of Fallot

J Am Coll Cardiol. 1997 Nov 1;30(5):1368-73. doi: 10.1016/s0735-1097(97)00316-1.


Objectives: We sought to determine the features associated with sustained monoform ventricular tachycardia (VT) in adult patients late after repair of tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) and to review their management.

Background: Patients with repair of TOF are at risk for sudden death. Risk factors for ventricular arrhythmia have been identified from patients with ventricular ectopic beats because of the low prevalence of sustained VT.

Methods: From a retrospective chart review of patients assessed between January 1990 and December 1994, 18 adult patients with VT were identified and compared with 192 with repaired TOF free of sustained arrhythmia.

Results: There was no significant difference in age at repair, age at follow-up or operative history. Patients with VT had frequent ventricular ectopic beats (6 of 9 vs. 21 of 101), low cardiac index ([mean +/- SD] 2.4 +/- 0.4 vs. 3.0 +/- 0.8) and more structural abnormalities of the right ventricle (outflow tract aneurysms and pulmonary or tricuspid regurgitation) than control patients. Electrophysiologic map-guided operation was performed in 10 of 14 patients who required reoperation. VT has reoccurred in three of these patients. Four patients did not undergo operation (three received amiodarone; one underwent defibrillator implantation). Two patients with VT also had severe heart failure and died.

Conclusions: Most patients with VT late after repair of TOF have outflow tract aneurysms or pulmonary regurgitation, or both. These patients have a greater frequency of ventricular ectopic beats than arrhythmia-free patients after repair of TOF. A combined approach of correcting significant structural abnormalities (pulmonary valve replacement or right ventricular aneurysmectomy, or both) with intraoperative electrophysiologic-guided ablation may reduce the potential risk of deterioration in ventricular function and enable arrhythmia management to be optimized.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Coronary Aneurysm / etiology
  • Female
  • Hemodynamics
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Complications*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Tachycardia, Ventricular / etiology*
  • Tachycardia, Ventricular / physiopathology
  • Tetralogy of Fallot / surgery*
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome