Background. Ischemic mitral regurgitation (MR), when ischemia/infarction has resulted in fibrotic degeneration and elongation of papillary muscles, carries a high risk for the patient and a technical challenge for the surgeon. We have developed a papillary-shortening plasty for this specific pathology. Methods. Papillary muscle repair was performed in 88 patients (7.2%) where degenerated and fibrotic elongated papillary muscles were found, which resulted in a prolapse of one or more parts of the mitral valve leaflets (MR III-IV). All patients had a papillary muscle-shortening plasty using a pericardium pledged-reinforced polytetra-fluoroethylene suture and a ring annuloplasty. Because the cause of regurgitation in this specific group of patients was ischemic, concomitant coronary bypass grafting was required in all patients, with 2.2 grafts/patient. Results. There were five hospital deaths (5.7%). Post-operative mitral valve function was satisfactory in all patients: No residual mitral regurgitation (MR 0) was found in 80 patients (90.9%), mild regurgitation (MR I) in 5 patients (5.7%), and moderate regurgitation (MR I-II) was observed in 3 patients (3.4%). Within a short mean follow-up period of 18.6 months (3 to 40 months), there was one late death (1.2%). The actuarial freedom from reoperation and thromboembolic complications was 100%, but there were two anticoagulation-induced gastric bleeding complications (2.3%). All patients were in New York Heart Association functional class I or II at the time of follow-up. Conclusions. Our data show that careful assessment of papillary muscle pathology is mandatory, and that a papillary muscle-shortening plasty is a simple but valuable surgical tool to repair the mitral valve in this specific group of high-risk patients with ischemic mitral regurgitation. (C) 2000 by The Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine