Background: Surgical closure of ventricular septal defects has been performed for many years, and is considered as the gold standard for treatment. It remains associated with morbidity and mortality. Transcatheter techniques have been developed in the last 10 years as a possible alternative to conventional surgery. Methods: The procedure is performed under general anaesthesia, and with continuous fluoroscopic and transesophageal echocardiographic guidance. Devices of the Amplatzer family, two in particular, have achieved a large popularity in clinical practice, and are currently the devices most commonly used to close muscular and perimembranous ventricular septal defect percutaneously. Results: Data from literature show that successful closure of muscular defects is obtained in around 96% of patients, with a rate of major complication of around 2%. Pooling data from the literature shows that successful closure of perimembranous defects is also obtained in 96% of patients, again with major acute complications in around 2%. The major problem is the occurrence of complete atrioventricular block, reported in 1.7% of subjects. Acquired defects can occur as residual leaks after surgical closure, or as consequence of myocardial infarction. There are very few data concerning percutaneous closure of postoperative residual defects. As for the surgical approach, in patients with post-myocardial defects the success rate of percutaneous closure is around 88%, with a mortality of 22%. Conclusions: Nowadays, in experienced hands, percutaneous closure is a safe and effective procedure. In selected patients, closure of congenital or acquired muscular and perimembranous ventricular septal defects can be considered a real alternative to the standard surgical approach, with the advantage of a significantly reduced rate of mortality and complications.
- Interventricular communications
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health