Pulmonary hypertension in heart transplantation: discrepant prognostic impact of pre-operative compared with 1-year post-operative right heart hemodynamics.

Department of Cardiology, Oslo University Hospital Rikshospitalet, Oslo, Norway. <>
The Journal of heart and lung transplantation: the official publication of the International Society for Heart Transplantation (Impact Factor: 5.61). 10/2009; 29(2):216-23. DOI: 10.1016/j.healun.2009.08.021
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The prognostic impact of pulmonary hypertension (PH) before and after heart transplantation (HTx) is debated. We investigated: (i) the significance of pre-operative reversible PH on post-operative survival; (ii) the value of recatheterization while on the waiting list; (iii) the evolution of right heart hemodynamics (RHH) after HTx; and (iv) the prognostic impact of PH at 1 year after HTx.
We reviewed the records of 500 HTx recipients transplanted between 1983 and 2007. Pre-operatively, a non-PH group (Group 1, n = 365) fulfilled directly our RHH criteria for HTx, while a PH group (Group 2, n = 135) was accepted after reversibility of PH by acute vasodilatory testing. Recatheterization was performed every third month while on the waiting list and repeatedly after transplantation.
With a follow-up of 6.8 +/- 5.1 years and a 50% survival rate of 12.1 +/- 5.4 years, our main findings were as follows: (i) Patients with reversible PH on vasodilatory testing had a survival rate similar to that of patients without PH (11.7 +/- 0.8 vs 12.1 +/- 0.5 years, p = 0.80). (ii) Pre-operative recatheterization was of limited value as RHH remained stable. Five percent of patients died while on the waiting list and 2 improved clinically and were removed. (iii) Mean pulmonary artery pressure (MAP) was reduced from 28 +/- 9 and 40 +/- 8 mm Hg pre-operatively to 21 +/- 7 and 24 +/- 6 mm Hg after 2 weeks and 16 +/- 7 and 18 +/- 8 mm Hg at 3 years in Groups 1 and 2, respectively. (iv) Recipients with MAP >20 mm Hg at 1 year post-HTx had significantly lower survival than those with MAP <or=20 mm Hg (11.5 +/- 0.7 vs 15.6 +/- 0.6 years, p < 0.001).
Elevated pulmonary pressure 1 year after HTx provides significant prognostic information regarding long-term outcome, whereas pre-operative reversible PH in this group does not influence survival.

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