Complications associated with left ventricular puncture

Sridevi R. Pitta, Allison K. Cabalka, Charanjit S. Rihal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Objective: To report complications in a consecutive series of patients undergoing percutaneous left ventricular apical puncture (LVAP) and sheath placement for diagnostic or interventional procedures. Background: Percutaneous LVAP is only rarely used to provide hemodynamic data in the presence of mechanical prosthetic valves. Recently, LVAP has been used to facilitate complex interventional procedures such as paravalvular leak closures. These frequently necessitate placement of 4-6 F sheaths, rather than smaller needles. Optimal technique and outcomes are largely unknown for this uncommon procedure. Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 32 patients undergoing LVAP with echocardiographic and fluoroscopic guidance at our institution between 2002 and 2009. These patients were referred to the cardiac catheterization laboratory for hemodynamic assessment to rule out prosthetic dysfunction and or to facilitate paravalvular leak closure. Sheaths ranged from 4 to 6 F were removed at the end of the procedure after reversing any anticoagulation. No specific closure devices were used for hemostasis. Frequency of access site complications associated with LVAP recorded. Results: Apical access site related complications were higher in patients requiring LVAP for intervention than for diagnostic purposes (25% vs. 12.5%). Hemothorax was the most frequent serious complication occurring in 6 (19%) patients and frequently required intervention 5(16%). Three patients had local bleeding with no drop in hemoglobin or need for intervention. Conclusions: LVAP is associated with a significant incidence of access-related complications. There is a need for safe and reliable methods of closing percutaneous LVAP access sites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)993-997
Number of pages5
JournalCatheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions
Issue number7
StatePublished - Dec 1 2010


  • complications
  • hemodynamics
  • hemothorax
  • left ventricular apical puncture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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