Recurrent arch obstruction after repair of isolated coarctation of the aorta in neonates and young infants: is low weight a risk factor?

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BACKGROUND: Repair of aortic coarctation is often delayed in small infants because of the belief that such patients are at risk of recurrent arch obstruction and that growth will decrease this risk. To determine whether low weight was a risk factor for recurrent arch obstruction, we reviewed our experience with coarctation repair via left thoracotomy in infants less than 3 months of age.

METHODS: From 1990 to 1999, 103 patients less than 3 months of age underwent repair of aortic coarctation through a left thoracotomy. Median age was 18 days (1-90 days), with 45 patients less than 2 weeks. Median weight was 3.3 kg (1.0-6.4 kg) and 14 patients were less than 2 kg. The method of repair was resection and end-to-end anastomosis in 64 patients, subclavian flap angioplasty in 34, and patch augmentation of the arch in 5. Demographic, echocardiographic, and operative variables were analyzed for correlation with recurrent arch obstruction.

RESULTS: One early and 1 late death occurred, both in patients who had complications but no evidence of recoarctation. At median follow-up of 24 months, reinterventions for recurrent arch obstruction were performed in 15 patients. The median time to reintervention was 5 months and was less than 1 year in 12 patients. Kaplan-Meier freedom from arch reintervention was 88% at 1 year (95% confidence intervals: 82%-94%) and 82% at 5 years (95% confidence intervals: 72%-92%). Factors associated with shorter duration to arch reintervention by univariable Cox regression included younger age (continuous, P =.01; <2 >weeks, P =.005), smaller transverse arch (absolute diameter, P

CONCLUSIONS: Low weight is not a risk factor for recurrent obstruction after repair of coarctation of the aorta in infants less than 3 months of age. Rather, risk of recoarctation is more a function of the anatomy of the arch. Thus, it is not indicated to delay repair in low weight infants with the goal of achieving growth.





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Medicine and Health Sciences | Pediatrics




Department of Pediatrics

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