Background Increasing numbers of elderly patients are now referred for mitral valve operations. It has been unclear whether the results offset the risk of intervention in this patient population. Methods We obtained clinical follow-up through May 2002 of 59 patients 80 years or older who underwent first-time isolated mitral valve repair (46 patients) or replacement (13 patients) for nonischemic, nonrheumatic mitral regurgitation from January 1990 to June 2000. The mean duration of follow-up was 68 ± 33 months. Observed survival was compared with the expected survival of persons of the same age and gender in the general population. Results Preoperatively 79% of patients were in New York Heart Association (NYHA) class III-IV. Operative mortality was 1.7%. Overall 1- and 5-year survival was 89% and 61%. One- and 5-year freedom from thromboembolic complications in hospital survivors was 97% and 84%. One- and 5-year freedom from heart-related hospitalization in hospital survivors was 89% and 78%. There were no reoperations. Twenty-nine patients underwent an echocardiographic follow-up; 31% of them exhibited moderate or more regurgitation. Of 37 surviving patients at follow-up, 78% were in NYHA functional class I-II. No statistically significant difference was noted between the observed survival postoperatively and the expected survival of persons of the same age and gender in the general population. In a univariate analysis, only preoperative left ventricular ejection fraction greater than 40% was significantly associated with freedom from late heart-related mortality (95% confidence interval 62%-92%, p = 0.01) and with freedom from heart-related hospitalization (95% CI 68%-95%, p < 0.01). Conclusions Native mitral valve surgery for isolated nonischemic, nonrheumatic disease in octogenarians resulted in a survival rate comparable with that of the general population. It also exhibited substantial improvement regarding the functional status of the patient. Reparative techniques did not result in a survival advantage compared with replacement but did prove to be a reliable approach. Surgery performed in an early stage, preceding the development of left ventricular dysfunction, was associated with an improved freedom from late cardiac complications.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine