Tricuspid Valve Regurgitation Immediately After Heart Transplant and Long-Term Outcomes

Muath Bishawi, Giorgio Zanotti, Linda Shaw, Michael MacKenzie, Anthony Castleberry, Karsten Bartels, Jacob Schroder, Eric Velazquez, Madhav Swaminathan, Joseph Rogers, Carmelo Milano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Background: Tricuspid valve regurgitation (TR) is a common finding immediately after cardiac transplantation. However, there is a scarcity of data regarding its implication if left untreated on long-term outcomes and the role of early surgical repair. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the Duke University Medical Center transplant database from January 2000 to June 2012 and identified 542 patients who underwent orthotropic heart transplantation. Patients were excluded if they underwent surgical repair for TR during the transplant or if the transplant was part of a multiorgan transplant or redo heart transplantation. TR was assessed intraoperatively after weaning from cardiopulmonary bypass. Independent variables were grade of TR and changes in TR grade during follow-up. TR grades were classified as insignificant (none or mild) versus significant (moderate or severe). Survival and need for posttransplant valve repair during follow-up were assessed. Results: Significant TR was detected in 114 patients (21%) after weaning from cardiopulmonary bypass, with no significant difference in preoperative recipient pulmonary vascular resistance. Significant TR was associated with increased maximum postoperative plasma creatinine (median [interquartile range], 2.2 [1.5 to 3.2] mg/dL vs 1.8 [1.4 to 2.6] mg/dL, p = 0.008), prolonged postoperative stay (median [interquartile range], 12 [9 to 21] days vs 10 [8 to 14] days; p < 0.001), and decreased adjusted survival. Significant TR regressed to insignificant in 91% of recipients by 1 year after transplant. Six recipients (1%) who had significant TR after cardiopulmonary bypass underwent delayed tricuspid valve repair for significant TR during follow-up. Conclusions: Significant TR is a common finding immediately after transplant and is associated with early morbidity and reduced adjusted survival. Most significant TR resolves by 1 year after transplant. Optimal algorithms for follow-up and treatment of significant TR after heart transplantation need to be defined.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1348-1355
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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