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Patients with unbalanced common atrioventricular canal can be difficult to manage. Surgical planning often depends on pre-operative echocardiographic measurements. We aimed to determine the added utility of cardiac MRI in predicting successful biventricular repair in common atrioventricular canal.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study of children with common atrioventricular canal who underwent MRI prior to repair. Associations between MRI and echocardiographic measures and surgical outcome were tested using logistic regression, and models were compared using area under the receiver operator characteristic curve.
We included 28 patients (median age at MRI: 5.2 months). The optimal MRI model included the novel end-diastolic volume index (using the ratio of left ventricular end-diastolic volume to total end-diastolic volume) and the left ventricle–right ventricle angle in diastole (area under the curve 0.83, p = 0.041). End-diastolic volume index ≤ 0.18 and left ventricle–right ventricle angle in diastole ≤ 72° yield a sensitivity of 83% and specificity of 81% for successful biventricular repair. The optimal multimodality model included the end-diastolic volume index and the echocardiographic atrioventricular valve index with an area under the curve of 0.87 (p = 0.026).
Cardiac MRI can successfully predict successful biventricular repair in patients with unbalanced common atrioventricular canal utilising the end-diastolic volume index alone or in combination with the MRI left ventricle–right ventricle angle in diastole or the echocardiographic atrioventricular valve index. A prospective cardiac MRI study is warranted to better define the multimodality characteristic predictive of successful biventricular surgery.
The right ventricular adaptations early after surgery in infants with tetralogy of Fallot are important to understand the changes that occur later on in life; this physiology has not been fully delineated. We sought to assess early postoperative right ventricular remodelling in patients with tetralogy of Fallot by cardiac MRI.
Materials and method
Subjects with tetralogy of Fallot under 1 year of age were recruited following complete surgical repair for tetralogy of Fallot. Protocol-based cardiac MRI to assess anatomy, function, and flows was performed before hospital discharge using the feed and sleep technique, an unsedated imaging technique.
MRI was completed in 16 subjects at a median age of 77 days (interquartile range 114). There was normal ventricular ejection fraction and indexed right ventricular end-diastolic volume (48±13 cc/m2), but elevated right ventricular mass (z score 6.2±2.4). Subjects requiring a transannular patch or right ventricle to pulmonary artery conduit had moderate pulmonary insufficiency (regurgitant fraction 27±16%).
Early right ventricular remodelling after surgical repair for tetralogy of Fallot is characterised by significant pulmonary regurgitation, right ventricular hypertrophy, and lack of dilation. Performing cardiac MRI using the feed and sleep technique is feasible in infants younger than 5 months. These results might open new avenues to study longitudinal right ventricular changes in tetralogy of Fallot and to further explore the utility of unsedated MRI in patients with other types of CHDs.
Fontan survivors have depressed cardiac index that worsens over time. Serum biomarker measurement is minimally invasive, rapid, widely available, and may be useful for serial monitoring. The purpose of this study was to identify biomarkers that correlate with lower cardiac index in Fontan patients.
Methods and results
This study was a multi-centre case series assessing the correlations between biomarkers and cardiac magnetic resonance-derived cardiac index in Fontan patients ⩾6 years of age with biochemical and haematopoietic biomarkers obtained ±12 months from cardiac magnetic resonance. Medical history and biomarker values were obtained by chart review. Spearman’s Rank correlation assessed associations between biomarker z-scores and cardiac index. Biomarkers with significant correlations had receiver operating characteristic curves and area under the curve estimated. In total, 97 cardiac magnetic resonances in 87 patients met inclusion criteria: median age at cardiac magnetic resonance was 15 (6–33) years. Significant correlations were found between cardiac index and total alkaline phosphatase (−0.26, p=0.04), estimated creatinine clearance (0.26, p=0.02), and mean corpuscular volume (−0.32, p<0.01). Area under the curve for the three individual biomarkers was 0.63–0.69. Area under the curve for the three-biomarker panel was 0.75. Comparison of cardiac index above and below the receiver operating characteristic curve-identified cut-off points revealed significant differences for each biomarker (p<0.01) and for the composite panel [median cardiac index for higher-risk group=2.17 L/minute/m2 versus lower-risk group=2.96 L/minute/m2, (p<0.01)].
Higher total alkaline phosphatase and mean corpuscular volume as well as lower estimated creatinine clearance identify Fontan patients with lower cardiac index. Using biomarkers to monitor haemodynamics and organ-specific effects warrants prospective investigation.
The Fontan procedure, although an imperfect solution for children born with a single functional ventricle, is the only reconstruction at present short of transplantation. The haemodynamics associated with the total cavopulmonary connection, the modern approach to Fontan, are severely altered from the normal biventricular circulation and may contribute to the long-term complications that are frequently noted. Through recent technological advances, spear-headed by advances in medical imaging, it is now possible to virtually model these surgical procedures and evaluate the patient-specific haemodynamics as part of the pre-operative planning process. This is a novel paradigm with the potential to revolutionise the approach to Fontan surgery, help to optimise the haemodynamic results, and improve patient outcomes. This review provides a brief overview of these methods, presents preliminary results of their clinical usage, and offers insights into its potential future directions.
The coronary arteries, the vessels through which both substrate and oxygen are provided to the cardiac muscle, normally arise from paired stems, right and left, each arising from a separate and distinct sinus of the aortic valve. The right coronary artery runs through the right atrioventricular groove, terminating in the majority of instances in the inferior interventricular groove. The main stem of the left coronary artery bifurcates into the anterior descending, or interventricular, and the circumflex branches. Origin of the anterior descending and circumflex arteries from separate orifices from the left sinus of Valsalva occurs in about 1% of the population, while it is also frequent to find the infundibular artery arising as a separate branch from the right sinus of Valsalva.
Anomalies of the coronary arteries can result from rudimentary persistence of an embryologic coronary arterial structure, failure of normal development or normal atrophy as part of development, or misplacement of connection of a an otherwise normal coronary artery. Anomalies, therefore, can be summarized in terms of abnormal origin or course, abnormal number of coronary arteries, lack of patency of the orifice of coronary artery, or abnormal connections of the arteries.
Anomalous origin of the left coronary artery from the pulmonary trunk occurs with an incidence of approximately 1 in 300,000 children. The degree of left ventricular dysfunction produced likely relates to the development of collateral vessels that arise from the right coronary artery, and provide flow into the left system. Anomalous origin of either the right or the left coronary artery from the opposite sinus of Valsalva can be relatively innocuous, but if the anomalous artery takes an interarterial course between the pulmonary trunk and the aorta, this can underlie sudden death, almost invariably during or immediately following strenuous exercise or competitive sporting events. Distal anomalies of the coronary arteries most commonly involve abnormal connections, or fistulas, between the right or left coronary arterial systems and a chamber or vessel.
We discuss the current techniques available for imaging these various lesions, along with their functional assessment, concluding with a summary of current strategies for management.
How best to analyse and describe the features of the situation commonly known as “visceral heterotaxy” remains controversial. Much of the disagreement devolves on how to deal with the concept of isomerism. In the opinion of some, the concept of bilateral right-sidedness and bilateral left-sidedness, while useful in helping to remember which abnormalities are likely to occur in asplenia or polysplenia, should not be granted the status of a specific “situs”, since there are numerous examples of exceptions to these patterns. On the other hand, those who favour the concept of isomerism point out that, when describing only the heart, and taking the structure of the atrial appendages as the starting point for analysis, basing this on the extent of the pectinate muscles relative to the atrioventricular junctions, then the only possible arrangements for the appendages are the usual one, its mirror-image, and the two situations in which appendages of comparable morphology are found on both sides of the heart, these being the arrangements of right or left isomerism. It is certainly the case that the arrangement of the organs is not always in harmony with the arrangement of the atrial appendages, but those circumstances, in which there is disharmony, can readily be described by paying specific attention to each series of organs. On this basis, in this review, we describe the approach to heterotaxy, and isomerism of the atrial appendages, in terms of the genetic background, the diagnosis, and outcomes after cardiac surgery. Attention is given to the various diagnostic modalities, including fetal and postnatal echocardiography, recent tomographic and magnetic resonance imaging techniques, and the time-honoured approach using angiography.
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