Congenital heart disease in patients with Turner's syndrome

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There is a high prevalence of congenital heart defects in patients with Turner's syndrome. Few studies have reported echocardiographic data in unselected patients according to the different chromosomal patterns. The aim of our study was to evaluate a large series of patients with Turner's syndrome, comparing these data with those of the general population.


Five hundred ninety-four patients with Turner's syndrome, aged 1 month to 24 years, in the Italian Study Group for Turner Syndrome underwent full cardiologic evaluation. Karyotype distribution was: 45,X (54%), X-mosaicism (13%), and X-structural abnormalities (33%).


The prevalence of cardiac malformations was 23%. Bicuspid aortic valve (12.5%), aortic coarctation (6.9%), and aortic valve disease (3.2%) were the most prevalent malformations. In comparison with the general population, partial anomalous pulmonary venous drainage had the highest relative risk. A correlation was found between type of congenital heart defect and karyotype. The patients with 45,X karyotype had the greatest prevalence of partial anomalous pulmonary venous drainage and aortic coarctation, whereas bicuspid aortic valve and aortic valve disease were more common in the patients with X-structural abnormalities. The patients with severe dysmorphic signs showed a significantly higher relative risk of cardiac malformations.


X-linked factors may be involved in determining cardiac defects in Turner's syndrome. (J Pediatr 1998;133:688-92)

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