Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery vol:135 issue:2 pages:274-82
OBJECTIVE: Durability assessment of mitral valve repair for degenerative valve incompetence is limited to reoperation as a primary indicator and valve-related risk factors for late death as a secondary indicator. We assessed serial echocardiographic follow-up of valve function as an indicator of the durability of mitral valve repair. METHODS AND RESULTS: In 348 patients having undergone mitral valve repair for degenerative valve incompetence, clinical outcome was excellent: 10 years after repair, survival was 80.1% and freedom from reoperation 94.4%. However, freedom from mitral regurgitation (>2/4), 98.7% at 1 month, decreased to 82.2% at 5 years and 64.9% at 10 years. The linearized recurrence rate of mitral regurgitation (>2/4) was 3.2% per year. Recurrence rate was higher in patients with Barlow disease (6.0%) and lower in those with fibroelastic deficiency (2.6%) (P = .01). Performing chordal shortening, the nonuse of sliding plasty and the nonuse of an annuloplasty ring were determined to be factors predicting recurrence of mitral regurgitation. In reconstructions avoiding these risk factors, recurrence rate decreased to 2.4%. There was no difference between Barlow disease and fibroelastic deficiency: 2.9% versus 2.2% (P > .05). Recurrent regurgitation is characterized by leaflet prolapse, thickening, and calcification. CONCLUSION: When optimal surgical techniques are used, the residual recurrence rate of mitral valve regurgitation remains between 2% and 3% per year and is related to progressive degeneration of the chordae and the leaflets. Long-term results of mitral valve repair in Barlow disease are essentially the same as in fibroelastic deficiency.