Long-Term Mortality Effect of Early Pacemaker Implantation After Surgical Aortic Valve Replacement

Kevin L. Greason, Brian D. Lahr, John M. Stulak, Yong Mei Cha, Robert F. Rea, Hartzell V. Schaff, Joseph A. Dearani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Background The need for pacemaker implantation is a well-described complication of aortic valve replacement. Not so well described is the effect such an event has on long-term outcome. This study reviewed a 21-year experience at the Mayo Clinic (Rochester, Minnesota) with aortic valve replacement to understand the influence of early postoperative pacemaker implantation on long-term mortality rates more clearly. Methods This study retrospectively reviewed the records of 5,842 patients without previous pacemaker implantation who underwent surgical aortic valve replacement from January 1993 through June 2014. The median age of these patients was 73 years (range, 65 to 79 years), the median ejection fraction was 62% (range, 53% to 68%), 3,853 patients were male (66%), and coronary artery bypass graft operation was performed in 2,553 (44%) of the patients studied. Early pacemaker implantation occurred in 146 patients (2.5%) within 30 days of surgical aortic valve replacement. Results The median follow-up of patients was 11.1 years (range, 5.8 to 16.5 years), and all-cause mortality rates were 2.4% at 30 days, 6.4% at 1 year, 23.1% at 5 years, 48.3% at 10 years, and 67.9% at 15 years postoperatively. Early pacemaker implantation was associated with an increased risk of death after multivariable adjustment for baseline patients’ characteristics (hazard ratio, 1.49; 95% confidence interval, 1.20, 1.84; p < 0.001). Conclusions Early pacemaker implantation as a complication of surgical aortic valve replacement is associated with an increased risk of long-term death. Valve replacement–related pacemaker implantation rates should be important considerations with respect to new valve replacement paradigms, especially in younger and lower-risk patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1259-1264
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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