Heterotopic heart transplantation: A single-centre experience

M. Boffini, T. Ragni, C. Pellegrini, C. Goggi, A. M. D'Armini, M. Rinaldi, M. Viganò

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction Orthotopic heart transplantation (OHTx) represents the therapy of choice for end-stage heart disease not treatable with medical or conservative surgical approach. Heterotopic heart transplantation (HHTx) is a surgical procedure in which the graft is connected to the native heart in a parallel fashion and it was especially employed in precyclosporine era. The aim of this paper is to present our experience with HHTx. Methods From November 1985 till May 2003, 713 heart transplanted patients included 12 (1.7%) received HHTx. Eleven were male, mean age was 50.7 ± 5.8 years. Five patients suffered from dilated cardiomyopathy and seven from ischemic cardiomyopathy. Indication for HHTx was: a body size mismatch in 11 cases and availability of a marginal organ in one case. Results Mean ischemic time was 149 ± 48 minutes and mean cross-clamp time was 82.3 ± 19.1 minutes. In four cases left ventricle aneurysm resection was associated with HHTx. Hospital mortality was 8.3% (one patient due to multiorgan failure). The actuarial survival rates were 92% and 64% at 1 and 5 years, respectively. The causes of death were: liver cancer, liver cirrosis, aortic dissection, cerebrovascular accident, and chronic rejection. Conclusions In our experience, HHTx survival rate is comparable to OHTx. Because of the scarcity of donors, use of an undersized or marginal graft is a valid option to increase the number of transplanted patients. The major disadvantages of HHTx are the need for anticoagulant therapy, the more difficult hemodynamic and immunologic follow-up, and the presence of the diseased native heart.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)638-640
Number of pages3
JournalTransplantation Proceedings
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Transplantation


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