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A Journal on Heart and Vascular Diseases

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Angiology and Vascular Pathology
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Minerva Cardioangiologica 2004 August;52(4):339-44

language: English, Italian

When should asymptomatic patients with combined severe aortic stenosis and aortic insufficiency undergo valve replacement? A clinical case

Gerasimou A., Oliaro E., Quaglia C., Canta M., Calachanis M., Morello M., Mangiardi L.


Indications to prosthetic aortic valve implantation in patients with aortic stenosis or aortic regurgitation or both stenotic or regurgitant aortic valve, who present without symptoms, are controversial. We present the case of an asymptomatic patient with combined severe aortic stenosis and an equally important insufficiency, undergoing surgery for valve substitution with a bileaflet prosthesis. After surgery he was treated with warfarin according to the doses recommended and underwent follow-up with clinical and echocardiographic exams. Eight months after intervention the patient had an embolic stroke with aphasia and right hemiplegia, despite the therapeutic level of INR. At present, even though he has partly recovered motorfunction, he reports a noteworthy decline in life quality, because of the persistent language difficulties. We use this case as the starting point for a discussion of the chance of referring patients affected by aortic valvulopathy to valve substitution, in the absence of symptoms.

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