Background: Predictors of thoracic aorta growth and early cardiac surgery in patients with bicuspid aortic valve are undefined. Our aim was to identify predictors of ascending aorta dilatation and cardiac surgery in patients with bicuspid aortic valve (BAV). Methods: Forty-one patients with BAV were compared with 165 patients with tricuspid aortic valve (TAV). All patients had LV EF > 50%, normal LV dimensions, and similar degree of aortic root or ascending aorta dilatation at enrollment. Patients with more than mild aortic stenosis or regurgitation were excluded. A CT-scan was available on 76% of the population, and an echocardiogram was repeated every year for a median time of 4 years (range: 2 to 8 years). Patterns of aortic expansion in BAV and TAV groups were analyzed by a mixed-effects longitudinal linear model. In the time-to-event analysis, the primary end point was elective or emergent surgery for aorta replacement. Results: BAV patients were younger, while the TAV group had greater LV wall thickness, arterial hypertension, and dyslipidemia than BAV patients. Growth rate was 0.46 ± 0.04 mm/year, similar in BAV and TAV groups (p = 0.70). Predictors of cardiac surgery were aorta dimensions at baseline (HR 1.23, p = 0.01), severe aortic regurgitation developed during follow-up (HR 3.49, p 0.04), family history of aortic aneurysm (HR 4.16, p 1.73), and history of STEMI (HR 3.64, p < 0.001). Conclusions: Classic baseline risk factors were more commonly observed in TAV aortopathy compared with BAV aortopathy. However, it is reassuring that, though diagnosed with aneurysm on average 10 years earlier and in the absence of arterial hypertension, BAV patients had a relatively low growth rate, similar to patients with a tricuspid valve. Irrespective of aortic valve morphology, patients with a family history of aortic aneurysm, history of coronary artery disease, and those who developed severe aortic regurgitation at follow-up, had the highest chances of being referred for surgery.
- Molecular Biology
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine