To reduce the risk of damage to the anterior surface of the right ventricle after resternotomy, it has been recommended that the pericardium be closed with a patch after open heart operations. We have examined 4 patients undergoing resternotomy for the third time 3 to 8 years after bovine pericardium valve replacement. On each occasion the pericardium was closed with a patch of bovine pericardium. In all cases, the patch was frozen to the inner aspect of the sternum, increasing the difficulty of resternotomy. Histological examinations of the patches confirmed dense fibrous connective tissue, patchy calcification, and foreign body giant cell reaction. Bovine pericardium appears to increase the difficulty of repeat cardiac operations. We recommend its use be discontinued.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine