Conduction disturbance after isolated surgical aortic valve replacement in degenerative aortic stenosis

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Conduction disturbances are common in patients with aortic stenosis. We investigated the incidence, reversibility, and prognosis of conduction disorders requiring permanent pacemaker implantation in patients with degenerative aortic stenosis after isolated aortic valve replacement.


This was a retrospective study conducted at a tertiary care center. We evaluated the incidence of conduction disturbances in patients who underwent isolated surgical aortic valve replacement for aortic stenosis between January 2005 and May 2015. Relevant clinical information was obtained from the patients' medical records.


We reviewed results of 663 patients with pathologically proven degenerative aortic stenosis (bicuspid aortic valve, n = 285 [43.0%]) who underwent isolated aortic valve replacement (mechanical valve, n = 310 [46.8%]). Patients' mean age was 67.1 ± 8.1 years, and 362 were male (54.6%). Immediate postoperative intraventricular conduction disorders occurred in 56 patients (8.4%), and atrioventricular block occurred in 68 patients (10.3%). Ten patients with symptomatic second-degree or third-degree atrioventricular block underwent permanent pacemaker implantation within 30 days of aortic valve replacement. During the mean follow-up period of 1288 ± 1122 days, 64 patients (9.7%) developed irreversible conduction disorders (bundle branch block n = 24 and first-degree atrioventricular block n = 42). Of the 10 patients requiring permanent pacemakers, 4 remained depend on the permanent pacemaker during follow-up. Beyond 30 days after aortic valve replacement, 1 patient underwent permanent pacemaker implantation for de novo conduction disturbance 44 months postoperatively.


After isolated aortic valve replacement, permanent pacemaker implantation for conduction disturbance is rare (n = 10/663, 1.5%). Isolated aortic valve replacement for degenerative aortic stenosis has a low risk of conduction disturbances during long-term follow-up.

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