Objectives: Surgical closure of some muscular ventricular septal defects has been proven to be difficult. In order to simplify the surgical technique we have used intraoperatively Rashkind double umbrella devices to occlude muscular ventricular septal defects. Methods: On the basis of haemodynamic and echocardiographyc study five children aged 4, 6, 7, 14 and 41 months were considered suitable candidates for intraoperative closure of muscular ventricular septal defects (midmuscular in three cases, apical in two) by Rashkind devices. Three of them had previously undergone pulmonary artery banding at 10, 11 and 41 days, respectively. During hypothermic cardiopulmonary by pass a delivery system was introduced across the tricuspid valve into the right ventricle and then passed through the ventricular septal defect; the distal umbrella of a 17 mm device was opened in the left ventricular cavity; a traction was applied to the introducer and the proximal umbrella was opened on the right side straddling the interventricular septum; the device was then secured on the right side by few stitches. In one case because of the wide diameter of the ventricular septal defect two umbrellas were used. The surgical procedure was completed with debanding and/or closure of other defects close to the aortic or tricuspid valve. Results: Immediate results, tested by epicardial or transesofageal echo, showed a minimal residual shunt in 4 patients and a moderate shunt in one. No early deaths occurred. A complete atrioventricular block developed in 1 patient who had an additional perimembranous defect closed with a prosthetic patch; a permanent pace maker was inserted 3 months after the operation. There was a late death for untractable right ventricular failure in 1 patient who had a large residual shunt erroneously considered moderate. In this patient, the size of the defect was underestimated both preoperatively then intraoperatively. The four survivors are doing well with no signs of hemodynamically significant residual shunts. Conclusions: The use of Rashkind umbrella devices for closing intraoperatively muscular defects can be helpful to standard surgical techniques when technical problems make patch closure difficult. Its use avoid the need of left ventriculotomy. Careful definition of the size of the defect is mandatory to select suitable candidates.
- Assist device
- Heart disease
- Ventricular septal defects
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine