Aortic valve repair(AVr) has emerged as a feasible and effective alternative to replacement(AVR) in patients with aortic insufficiency(AI), however, little data exists comparing outcomes. Thus, the objective of this study was to compare early and long-term valve related complications between AVr and AVR in the treatment of AI.
Single centre, retrospective study of all patients(n=417) undergoing AVr (n=264) or AVR (n=153) for primary AI. Propensity-matching using a 1:1 greedy matching algorithm identified 140 patients using six covariates (age, gender, LV function, size, presence of aortopathy, and urgency of operation) for comparison. The primary outcome was a composite of all valve-related events(VRE), including: endocarditis, myocardial infarction(MI), stroke, transient ischemic attack(TIA), thromboembolisms, bleeding, and aortic valve(AV) reoperation. VRE were defined as per published guidelines. Survival and freedom from VRE were reported using the Kaplan-Meier method.
Propensity-matching identified 70 well matched pairs with no major differences in baseline demographics, comorbidities, or AI severity(p=0.57). Perioperative outcomes showed no significant differences in VRE (AVR 8 vs AVr 7,p=0.78) or mortality (AVR 3 vs AVr 1,p=0.62). Event-free survival from the primary outcome at 10-years was significantly better after AVr than after AVR (82%vs68%,p=0.024), with no significant differences in 10-year overall survival between groups(82%vs72%,p=0.29). No significant differences in AI severity(p=0.07) or reoperation rate(p=0.44) were detected between groups.
This study demonstrated a lower long-term risk of VRE with repair compared to replacement, with low mortality and comparable durability. Further prospective randomized control trials are necessary to formally compare outcomes and determine superiority.

Copyright © 2021. Published by Elsevier Inc.