Surgical management of total anomalous pulmonary venous drainage: impact of coexisting cardiac anomalies

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Recent reports have cited improving results for surgical management of isolated total anomalous pulmonary venous drainage. Complex cases (with other cardiac anomalies) are less frequently reported and are associated with higher mortality.


Retrospective review identified 170 consecutive patients treated for total anomalous pulmonary venous drainage from 1982 to 1996: 44 cases were “complex” (with significant associated cardiac lesions) and 126 cases were “simple.”


Operative mortality for simple cases decreased from 26% to 8%, and mortality for complex cases remained constant at 52%. Age, size, and the presence of atrial isomerism were univariate predictors of mortality. Multivariable analysis identified only univentricular hearts and associated cardiac lesions as predictors of operative mortality. Pulmonary artery (n = 16) and arteriopulmonary (n = 7) shunting strategies for complex cases resulted in less than 30% long-term survival.


Despite improvement in survival for simple cases, management of total anomalous pulmonary venous drainage with single-ventricle hearts or other associated cardiac lesions remains problematic.

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