Anticoagulation following mitral valve repair

Tessa M.F. Watt, Shannon L. Murray, Alexander A. Brescia, David A. Burn, Alexander Wisniewski, Shazli P. Khan, Matthew A. Romano, Steven F. Bolling, M. The

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5 Scopus citations


Background and Aim: Anticoagulation after mitral valve repair is controversial and guidelines are not well-established. This study evaluated the association between postoperative warfarin use and complications after mitral valve repair, including bleeding and thromboembolic incidents, readmission, and mortality. Methods: This retrospective study investigated 1097 patients who underwent elective mitral valve repair between April 2003 and March 2017, and was naïve to atrial fibrillation or prior cardiac surgery. This cohort had no other indication for or against anticoagulation. About 775 patients were placed on warfarin with international normalized ratio goal 2.5 and 322 patients were not anticoagulated. The association between anticoagulation and complications was assessed with univariate comparisons between groups and multiple logistic regression. Results: Postoperative warfarin use was associated with a reduced composite of bleeding and thromboembolic complications (pulmonary embolism, TIA, stroke, pericardial effusion or cardiac tamponade, gastrointestinal bleeding, and reoperation for bleeding) with an odds ratio of 0.29 (95% confidence interval, 0.13-0.64, P =.003). There was no difference in 30-day or 6-month mortality or readmission rate between groups. Long-term survival estimates were superior in the warfarin group (10-year: 92% vs 85%; log-rank P <.001). Conclusions: Our analysis showed that postoperative warfarin use was associated with an overall reduced composite of bleeding and thromboembolic incidents and superior long-term survival. These findings suggest that anticoagulation with warfarin following mitral valve repair may be a safe and effective means for avoiding postoperative complications and that a large prospective randomized clinical trial is warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2887-2894
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cardiac Surgery
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

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  • cardiovascular research
  • valve repair/replacement


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