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BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Long-term competence of any aortic prosthesis is critical to its clinical durability. Bioprosthetic valves, and in particular the stentless type have been proposed to offer superior haemodynamic profiles with consequent potential for superior left-ventricular mass regression. These benefits however are balanced by the potential longevity of the implanted valve. The aims of this study were to assess medium-term Toronto aortic valve function and its effect on left-ventricular function. METHODS: Between 1992 and 1996 86 patients underwent Toronto aortic valve replacement for aortic valve disease and were followed up annually. Prospectively collected data was analyzed for all patients where detailed echocardiographic follow-up was available. Echocardiographic studies were analyzed at 2+/-0.6 and 6+/-1.4 years after valve replacement. Data collected included left-ventricular systolic and diastolic dimensions, fractional shortening and left-ventricular mass. In addition, data on aortic valve and root morphology, peak aortic velocities, time velocity integral, stroke volume and the mechanism of valve failure where relevant, were also collected. RESULTS: Complete echocardiographic data were available for eighty-four patients, age 69+/-9 years, 62 male. Additional coronary artery bypass grafting was performed in 38% of patients. Twelve (14%) valves had failed during follow-up, 7 (8%) requiring re-operation. Valve failure was associated with morphologically bicuspid native aortic valve (9/12), and progressive dilatation of the aortic sinuses, sino-tubular junction and ascending aorta (11/12). Left-ventricular mass index remained high (184+/-75 g/m(2)) and did not continue to regress between early and medium-term follow-up (175.8+/-77 g/m(2)). CONCLUSIONS: Although more than 90% of implanted Toronto aortic valves remained haemodynamically stable with low gradient at medium-term follow-up, young age and larger aortic dimensions in patients with valve failure suggest better outcome if used in the elderly with normal aortic root geometry.

Original publication




Journal article


Int J Cardiol

Publication Date





210 - 215


Aged, Aortic Valve, Disease Progression, Female, Heart Valve Diseases, Heart Valve Prosthesis Implantation, Hemodynamics, Humans, Male, Prospective Studies, Time Factors, Treatment Outcome, Ultrasonography, Ventricular Function, Left