Cinefluoroscopic Follow up of the St. Jude Medical® Valve in the Aortic Position
Follow-up of patients with prosthetic heart vahes is greatly facilitated by noninvasive studies. Since the ST. JUDE MEDICAL® valve is readily visualized radiographically, we performed nonenhanced cinefluoroscopy on 72 occasions in 62 patients after aortic valve replacement with this prothesis. Five patients had serial studies. Both leaflets were adequately visualized in all but 1 patient. The study was grossly normal to objective interpretation in 63 of 72 studies, slightly abnormal (slight stuttering or asymmetry of leaflet motion) in 6, and grossly abnormal in 3. It was possible to measure the opening and closing angles (minimal and maximal interleaflet angles) and to generate leaflet velocities and acceleration. In the 3 patients with grossly abnormal valve motion (leaflet partially or fully immobilized), the fluoroscopic study modified the therapy. The group of patients as a whole modified our approach to postoperative anticoagulation in the ST. JUDE MEDICAL aortic valve patients. In conclusion, the ST. JUDE MEDICAL valve lends itself to easily performed, non-enhanced cinefluoroscopic examination. Our data support routine performance of this test postoperatively and at serial intervals, especially when valve malfunction is suspected.
KeywordsAortic Valve Valve Replacement Aortic Valve Replacement JUDE Medical Prosthetic Heart Valve
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