Objective: Patients with Marfan syndrome with aortic root aneurysms undergo elective aortic root replacement to avoid the life-threatening outcomes of aortic dissection and emergency repair. The long-term implications of failed aortic surveillance leading to acute dissection and emergency repair are poorly defined. We compared the long-term clinical courses of patients with Marfan syndrome who survive emergency versus elective proximal aortic surgery. Methods: The Genetically Triggered Thoracic Aortic Aneurysms and Cardiovascular Conditions Registry is a National Institutes of Health-funded multicenter database and biorepository that enrolls patients with genetically triggered thoracic aortic aneurysms. Of the 635 patients with Marfan syndrome enrolled as of March 2011, 194 had undergone proximal aortic replacement. Patients were grouped according to emergency (n = 47) or elective (n = 147) status at the time of surgery. Results: Patients in the emergency group were more likely to have incomplete proximal aortic resection; 83% of emergency procedures included aortic root replacement, compared with 95% of elective procedures. At long-term follow-up (mean, >6 years), the emergency group had a higher incidence of chronic dissection of the distal aorta and significantly larger diameters in distal aortic segments than elective patients. Patients in the emergency group had undergone more operations (1.31 vs 1.11 procedures/patient; P = .01) and had lower activity scores on a health-related quality of life survey. Conclusions: For patients with Marfan syndrome, failed aortic surveillance and consequent emergency dissection repair have important long-term implications with regard to the status of the distal aorta, need for multiple procedures, and quality of life. These findings emphasize the importance of aortic surveillance and timely elective aortic root aneurysm repair for patients with Marfan syndrome.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine