Echocardiographically guided repair of tetralogy of Fallot

Giuseppe Santoro, Bruno Marino, Duccio Di Carlo, Roberto Formigari, Andrea de Zorzi, Ennio Mazzera, Gabriele Rinelli, Carlo Marcelletti, Giuseppe De Simone, Luciano Pasquini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although 2-dimensional, Doppler, color flow echocardiography is accepted as a safe diagnostic method to guide the surgical treatment of certain heart defects, cardiac catheterization remains mandatory for patients with tetralogy of Fallot. Based on the excellent diagnostic correlation between echocardiography and angiocardiography, a policy of echo-guided primary repair of uncomplicated, selected cases of tetralogy of Fallot was introduced at Ospedale Bambino Gesu'. In the last 5 years, of 139 patients who had surgery for tetralogy of Fallot, 105 underwent primary repair. In 56 patients (53.3%), surgery was guided only by echocardiography (group I). In the remaining 49 patients (46.7%) (group II), unclear imaging of cardiovascular anatomy (n = 23), or echo-suspected associated malformations (n = 26) prompted cardiac catheterization. The 2 groups did not differ in age and weight at surgery. Intraoperative examination did not show diagnostic errors in patients of group I; cardiac catheterization and surgery confirmed the suspected associated anomalies in 16 of 26 patients of group II (38.4% false-positive). Echocardiography showed an overall sensitivity of 100% and specificity of 85% for detection of associated malformations. In conclusion, echocardiography proved to be adequate for selection of patients with uncomplicated forms of tetralogy of Fallor for primary repair.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)808-811
Number of pages4
JournalThe American Journal of Cardiology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Apr 15 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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