OBJECTIVES: The study aims to define predictors of neurological dysfunction, 30-day mortality, long-term survival and quality of life following repair of acute type A aortic dissection (AAAD).
METHODS: Between 2000 and 2008, 65 patients underwent repair of AAAD. Sixty-four pre-, intra- and post-operative variables were studied. Mean follow-up was 26.6 months.
RESULTS: The mean age was 61years; 60% were male and five had Marfan's syndrome. At presentation, ischaemic ECG changes were seen in 45%, malperfusion syndrome in 59%, moderate-severe aortic regurgitation in 48% and tamponade in 16%. EF was <40% in 17%. There was a delay of >12hours between diagnosis and operation in 64%. Axillary cannulation was performed in 37%. Cerebral protection was by hypothermic arrest (HCA) alone (19%), HCA with retrograde cerebral perfusion (RCP) (11%), or HCA with antegrade cerebral perfusion (ACP) (46%). The procedure was performed on cross-clamp in 24%. Full arch replacement was performed in 14% and concomitant coronary artery grafting was performed in 11%. Post-operative neurological dysfunction was present in 33.8%. The only significant predictor of poor neurological outcome was full arch replacement (p=0.04) on univariate analysis. In-hospital OR 30 mortality was 23.53%. Significant predictors of mortality were low ejection fraction (p=0.017) and post-operative renal failure (p=0.012). Long-term survival was 70% at two years, 50% at five years and 25% at nine years. Functional outcomes and long-term quality of life were assessed in 69% of patients who were alive at last follow-up. Ninety percent of patients reported minimal limitation on functional scores. Quality of life was assessed using the EQ-5D questionnaire. Forty-eight percent of patients recorded full health with an overall mean index of 0.854 (where the best possible score is 1) using the US preference weighted index score.
CONCLUSIONS: Discharged patients have reasonable long-term survival and good quality of life.