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Perioperative management of patients with poorly functioning ventricles in the setting of the functionally univentricular heart

  • Joseph W. Rossano (a1) and Anthony C. Chang (a1)


The patient with a functionally univentricular heart is at increased risk for ventricular dysfunction for a variety of reasons. At birth, the pulmonary and systemic circulations are in parallel, leading to pulmonary overcirculation and a volume-loaded functional ventricle. Significant atrioventricular valvar regurgitation, abnormal ventriculoarterial coupling, diastolic dysfunction, and altered ventricular geometry can also contribute to long-term ventricular dysfunction. These collected circumstances place the patient at increased risk for perioperative morbidity and mortality. We will discuss in this review the pathophysiology that leads to ventricular dysfunction at each stage of surgical palliation, as well as the strategies for perioperative management. In addition, we will highlight novel strategies for management of ventricular dysfunction.


Corresponding author

Correspondence to: Anthony C. Chang, MD, Texas Children's Hospital, MC 19345C, 6621 Fannin Street, Houston, TX 77030, USA. Tel: +1 832 826 5671; Fax: +1 832 825 5883; E-mail:


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