Transcatheter vs. surgical aortic valve replacement: a retrospective analysis assessing clinical effectiveness and safety

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ObjectiveTo compare, in terms of clinical effectiveness and safety, patients who underwent transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) with those who underwent surgical aortic valve replacement (S-AVR) for the treatment of severe aortic stenosis during the same period.MethodsOne hundred and eighty-seven consecutive patients were included: 81 with S-AVR and 106 with TAVI. Primary and secondary outcomes were reported in accordance with published reporting guidelines for valve surgery. A propensity matching model was computed in the attempt to reduce confounding effects of covariates.ResultsThirty-day mortality and morbidity, as well as follow-up events, did not differ between the two therapeutic options, except for ICU stay, in favor of TAVI, and occurrence of pleural effusions, in favor of S-AVR. TAVI accomplished significant mean aortic gradient reduction (better than S-AVR in the immediate postoperative and at least comparable at follow-up) and improvement in valve area and functional class (always higher than S-AVR). Although for the first year, survival was at least comparable between TAVI and S-AVR (both whole and matched groups); at later times, TAVI all-cause and noncardiac mortality was higher in the whole sample, as expected from age and comorbidities of TAVI patients. At later follow-up, in the matched subsamples, 1-year mortality rates were replicated, with a significantly higher incidence of cardiac deaths in S-AVR patients.ConclusionTAVI morbidity and mortality registered in this series are lower than those estimated for conventional surgery in high-risk patients and compare to those associated with S-AVR in good surgical candidates.

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