Pulmonary stenosis and pulmonary regurgitation: both ends of the spectrum in residual hemodynamic impairment after tetralogy of Fallot repair


Repair of tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) has shown excellent outcomes. However it leaves varying degrees of residual hemodynamic impairment, with severe pulmonary stenosis (PS) and free pulmonary regurgitation (PR) at both ends of the spectrum. Since the 1980s, studies evaluating late outcomes after TOF repair revealed the adverse impacts of residual chronic PR on RV volume and function; thus, a turnaround of operational strategies has occurred from aggressive RV outflow tract (RVOT) reconstruction for complete relief of RVOT obstruction to conservative RVOT reconstruction for limiting PR. This transformation has raised the question of how much residual PS after conservative RVOT reconstruction is acceptable. Besides, as pulmonary valve replacement (PVR) increases in patients with RV deterioration from residual PR, there is concern regarding when it should be performed. Regarding residual PS, several studies revealed that PS in addition to PR was associated with less PR and a small RV volume. This suggests that PS combined with PR makes RV diastolic property to protect against dilatation through RV hypertrophy and supports conservative RVOT enlargement despite residual PS. Also, several studies have revealed the pre-PVR threshold of RV parameters for the normalization of RV volume and function after PVR, and based on these results, the indications for PVR have been revised. Although there is no established strategy, better understanding of RV mechanics, development of new surgical and interventional techniques, and evidence for the effect of PVR on RV reverse remodeling and its late outcome will aid us to optimize the management of TOF

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