Results of the Fontan procedure for patients with univentricular heart

Academic Article


  • One hundred twenty-four consecutive patients with univentricular heart undergoing the Fontan operation were reviewed. Patients with tricuspid atresia or biventricular heart with hypoplasia of one ventricle were excluded. Eighty-four patients had left ventricular morphology. Atrioventricular connection was double-inlet (n = 76), common (n = 29), absent left atrioventricular connection (n = 14), and absent right atrioventricular connection (n = 5). Actuarial survival was 77% (70% confidence limits, 73% to 81%) at 1 year, 66% (70% confidence limits, 60% to 72%) at 5 years, and 49% (70% confidence limits, 36% to 61%) at 10 years, indicating a continuing risk for premature death. Multivariate analysis identified preoperative ventricular function and hypertrophy as risk factors for survival. High postrepair right atrial pressure (>15 mm Hg) emerged as a strong intraoperative predictor of survival. Logistic regression analysis of these factors predicts high probability of death for certain subgroups of patients after the Fontan operation. Forty-four percent (n = 53) of these original 124 patients are alive and in New York Heart Association class I at follow-up. Thirty-eight percent (n = 33) of survivors have worse ventricular function than preoperative. Long-term survival is disappointing. Certain identifiable subgroups of patients with univentricular heart have unacceptable risks for the Fontan operation and should have alternate management. High postrepair right atrial pressure is an ominous sign, and if it persists the Fontan should be fenestrated or taken down. © 1992.
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    Author List

  • Cohen AJ; Cleveland DC; Dyck J; Poppe D; Smallhorn J; Freedom RM; Trusler GA; Coles JG; Moes CAF; Rebeyka IM
  • Start Page

  • 1266
  • End Page

  • 1271
  • Volume

  • 52
  • Issue

  • 6