Preoperative planning of left-sided valve surgery with 3D computed tomography reconstruction models: sternotomy or a minimally invasive approach?

Samuel Heuts, Jos G. Maessen, Peyman Sardari Nia*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


OBJECTIVES: With the emergence of a new concept aimed at individualization of patient care, the focus will shift from whether a minimally invasive procedure is better than conventional treatment, to the question of which patients will benefit most from which technique? The superiority of minimally invasive valve surgery (MIVS) has not yet been proved. We believe that through better patient selection advantages of this technique can become more pronounced. In our current study, we evaluate the feasibility of 3D computed tomography (CT) imaging reconstruction in the preoperative planning of patients referred for MIVS. METHODS: We retrospectively analysed all consecutive patients who were referred for minimally invasive mitral valve surgery (MIMVS) and minimally invasive aortic valve replacement (MIAVR) to a single surgeon in a tertiary referral centre for MIVS between March 2014 and 2015. Prospective preoperative planning was done for all patients and was based on evaluations by a multidisciplinary heart-team, an echocardiography, conventional CT images and 3D CT reconstruction models. RESULTS: A total of 39 patients were included in our study; 16 for mitral valve surgery (MVS) and 23 patients for aortic valve replacement (AVR). Eleven patients (69%) within the MVS group underwent MIMVS. Five patients (31%) underwent conventional MVS. Findings leading to exclusion for MIMVS were a tortuous or slender femoro-iliac tract, calcification of the aortic bifurcation, aortic elongation and pericardial calcifications. Furthermore, 2 patients had a change of operative strategy based on preoperative planning. Seventeen (74%) patients in the AVR group underwent MIAVR. Six patients (26%) underwent conventional AVR. Indications for conventional AVR instead of MIAVR were an elongated ascending aorta, ascending aortic calcification and ascending aortic dilatation. One patient (6%) in the MIAVR group was converted to a sternotomy due to excessive intraoperative bleeding. Two mortalities were reported during conventional MVS. There were no mortalities reported in the MIMVS, MIAVR or conventional AVR group. CONCLUSIONS: Preoperative planning of minimally invasive left-sided valve surgery with 3D CT reconstruction models is a useful and feasible method to determine operative strategy and exclude patients ineligible for a minimally invasive approach, thus potentially preventing complications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)587-593
JournalInteractive Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2016


  • Minimally invasive surgery
  • Aortic valve
  • Mitral valve
  • Preoperative planning
  • 3D imaging


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