A survey of cardiac surgeons to evaluate the use of sutureless aortic valve replacement in Canada
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BackgroundSutureless aortic valve replacement (SuAVR) is gaining popularity for the treatment of aortic stenosis. We aimed to describe Canadian cardiac surgeons' practice patterns and perceptions regarding SuAVR.
MethodsContent experts (clinicians and methodologists) developed the survey. Domains in the questionnaire include: respondent characteristics, factors influencing the decision to implant a SuAVR, barriers to SuAVR use, and interest in participating in a trial.
ResultsA total of 66 cardiac surgeons (median duration of practice: 15 years; range 8-20 years) from 18 hospitals across Canada responded to the survey for a response rate of 84%. Surgeons reported that the following patient characteristics increased the likelihood they would choose SuAVR: hostile root (73%), small annular size (55%), high Society of Thoracic Surgery risk score (42%), older age (40%), to support minimally invasive surgery (25%) and redo-operation (23%). The following patient characteristics made surgeons less likely to pursue SuAVR: young age (73%), low STS score (40%), and large annular size (30%). Reported barriers to SuAVR use included: cost (33%), permanent pacemaker risk (27%) and uncertain durability (12%). Of respondents, 73% were interested in participating in a randomized controlled trial comparing SuAVR with transcatheter aortic valve replacement.
ConclusionsThe primary reasons for surgeons selecting SuAVR were high surgical risk and anatomical challenges. Cost is a primary factor limiting SuAVR use.
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