J Transplant 2012 14;2012:120702. Epub 2012 Oct 14.
Heart Transplantation Unit, Department of Cardiac Surgery, Leviev Heart Center, Sheba Medical Center, and the Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, 52621 Ramat Gan, Israel.
Background. Tricuspid valve regurgitation (TR) after orthotopic heart transplantation (OHT) is common. The aims of this study were to determine the prevalence of TR after OHT, to examine the correlation between its development and various variables, and to determine its outcomes. Methods. All 163 OHT patients who were followed up between 1988 and 2009 for a minimal period of 12 months were divided into those with no TR/mild TR and those with at least mild-moderate TR, as assessed by doppler echocardiography. These groups were compared regarding preoperative hemodynamic variables, surgical technique employed, number of endomyocardial biopsies, number of acute cellular rejections, incidence of graft vasculopathy, and clinical outcomes. Results. At the end of the followup (average 8.2 years) significant TR was evident in 14.1% of the patients. The development of late TR was found by univariate, but not multivariate, analysis to be significantly correlated with the biatrial surgical technique (P < 0.01) and the presence of graft vasculopathy (P < 0.001). TR development was found to be correlated with the need for tricuspid valve surgery but not with an increased mortality. Conclusions. The development of TR after OHT may be related to the biatrial anastomosis technique and to graft vasculopathy.