Better surgical prognosis for patients with complete atrioventricular septal defect and Down's syndrome

Roberto Formigari, Roberto M. Di Donato, Gaetano Gargiulo, Duccio Di Carlo, Cristiana Feltri, Fernando M. Picchio, Bruno Marino

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Background Several studies have shown that Down's syndrome is not a risk factor for biventricular repair of complete atrioventricular septal defects. However, few data are available about the comprehensive outcome of all the cardiac surgical procedures in patients with trisomy 21, including palliative surgery. Methods This is a retrospective study of 206 consecutive patients who underwent cardiac surgery from January 1992 to January 2002. Data about mortality and morbidity were analyzed and the impact of Down's syndrome was evaluated. Results Overall mortality was 7.7%. Actuarial survival was 94% among patients with Down's syndrome versus 86% of the group with normal karyotype (p = 0.12). The presence of unbalanced ventricles was the only independent risk factor affecting survival at multivariate analysis (p <0.0001). The need for a Norwood type surgery was more frequent among non-Down patients (12.0% vs 1.5%, p = 0.02) as was the prevalence of pulmonary artery banding operations (22.9% vs 9.3%, p = 0.04). Cumulative mortality after palliation was higher in non-Down patients (44% vs 2.9%, p = 0.0001). Freedom from reoperation was lower in the group with normal chromosomes in respect to patients with Down's syndrome (81.4% vs 94.6%, p = 0.04), due to the higher prevalence of anomalies of the mitral valve (4.9% vs 1.8%, p = 0.03) or left ventricular outflow tract (7.3% vs 0%, p = 0.01). Conclusions Down patients showed a decreased risk for biventricular repair and lower mortality and morbidity in cases of complex cardiac malformations requiring complex palliative operations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)666-672
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2004


  • 21

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Surgery


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