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Journal and News Scan

Source: Journal of the American College of Cardiology
Author(s): Liwen Liu, Jing Li, Lei Zuo, Jinzhou Zhang, Mengyao Zhou, Bo Xu, Rebeccca T. Hahn, Martin B. Leon, David H. Hsi, Junbo Ge, Xiaodong Zhou, Jun Zhang, Shuping Ge and Lize Xiong

The authors of this paper investigated the efficacy and safety of percutaneous intramyocardial septal radiofrequency ablation (PIMSRA) in 15 patients with hypertophic cardiomyopathy (HOCM). At six months, they found significant reductions in peak left ventricular outflow tract gradients and intraventricular septal thickness. This also led to functional improvement, measured in NYHA class and total exercise time.  These results show that PIMSRA could potentially offer a less invasive alternative for surgical myectomy.

Source: News from around the web.
Author(s): Emily Robinson

Patient Care and General Interest

A family in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, whose 13-month-old daughter was born with pulmonic stenosis, has adopted a dog with the same congenital heart defect.


Drugs and Devices

A team of researchers from the University of California, San Diego has developed a non-invasive wearable ultrasound patch that could potentially monitor patients with heart or lung diseases, and help detect cardiovascular problems at an earlier stage.


Research, Trials, and Funding

The GALILEO trial has been halted due to concerns over rivaroxaban causing higher rates of death or thromboembolic events following transcatheter aortic valve replacement.

The Magee-Womens Research Institute in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, has awarded the $1 million Magee Prize to an international team of scientists studying the potential connection between defects in the placenta during gestation and congenital heart defects.

A study conducted at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden suggests that atrial fibrillation may speed up dementia in older adults.

A long-term follow-up study in Australia of patients who underwent CABG surgery with radial artery grafts instead of saphenous vein grafts indicates that they did not experience impaired forearm blood flow.

Source: The Annals of Thoracic Surgery
Author(s): Justin A. Drake, David C. Portnoy, Kurt Tauer, Benny Weksler

This analysis of the National Cancer Database included over 2000 eligible patients resected with N2 disease who did not receive induction therapy. The addition of radiotherapy to postoperative chemotherapy did not affect survival in either the unmatched or the matched groups. 

Source: Annals of Cardiothoracic Surgery
Author(s): Piroze M. Davierwala, Sergey Leontyev, Jens Garbade, Sven Lehmann, David Holzhey, Martin Misfeld, Michael A. Borger

This institutional series from Leipzig Heart Centre presents results from 15 years of bilateral internal thoracic artery usage in off-pump CABG (OPCABG). Survival analysis as well as detailed postoperative outcomes are presented to demonstrate that OPCABG with bilateral internal thoracic artery grafting is a safe operation with low mortality and morbidity.

Source: Critical Care Medicine
Author(s): Robert H Bartlett

A brief viewpoint article (by the savior of baby Esperanza) from a widely read non-surgical journal on the debate on ECMO/EOLIA. I assume  'thoracotomy' implies 'sternotomy' as the standard surgical approach for ECMO cannulation in adults and larger children. 

The surgical reader will of course realize that this paper is focusing on non-arterial ECMO ( V-V), although the distinction between VV and V-A is not discussed explicitly by Dr. Bartlett on this occasion.

Source: The Lancet
Author(s): Richard Smith

This is a damning article about profiteering in academic publishing at the expense of researchers, institutions, and other interested parties.  

Source: The Annals of Thoracic Surgery
Author(s): Daniel H. Buitrago, Sidhu P. Gangadharan, Adnan Majid, Michael S. Kent, Daniel Alape, Jennifer L. Wilson, Mihir S. Parikh, Dae H. Kim

Patients undergoing tracheobronchoplasty for diffuse tracheobronchial malacia were retrospectively stratified as severely frail or other based on a cumulative deficits model score.  Severe frailty was associated with an increased risk of respiratory failure (OR 13.1), pneumonia (OR 20.1), and overall respiratory complications (OR 17.4).  

Source: European Journal of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery
Author(s): Tadashi Kitamura, Shinzo Torii, Kensuke Kobayashi, Yuki Tanaka, Akihiro Sasahara, Yuki Ohtomo, Rihito Horikoshi, Kagami Miyaji

There are several different strategies for arterial cannulation in patients with acute aortic dissection type A. Kitamura and colleagues compared results of direct true-lumen cannulation (Samurai cannulation) with other cannulation options. The retrospective review includes 100 patients undergoing surgery for acute type A aortic dissection, 61 of whom underwent Samurai cannulation. Samurai and other cannulation site patients had in-hospital mortality rates of 5% and 7%, respectively. Seven percent of Samurai cannulation patients and 10% of other cannulation site patients experienced disabling stroke. There was no difference between the groups regarding survival and freedom from aorta-related death at follow-up. The authors conclude that Samurai cannulation is a safe and reasonable option in patients with type A dissection.

Source: DG News
Author(s): Lorraine L. Janeczko after Phillip M. King et al.

Will await the full paper to test the titular preliminary assertion. 

Source: News from around the web.
Author(s): Emily Robinson

Patient Care and General Interest

Saturday, September 29 is World Heart Day! This year’s theme is “My Heart, Your Heart.”

Gerald D. Buckberg, MD, a renowned heart surgeon who made a major contribution in the field of myocardial protection, recently passed away.

Team Heart, a group of medical volunteers, visits Rwanda once a year to perform life-saving valve replacement procedures caused by rheumatic heart disease, which is prevalent in many African and Asian countries.

An atrial fibrillation procedure performed on a keen Hong Kong-based marathon runner saved him from a life-threatening abnormal heart rhythm and gave him renewed energy when training.



Data presented at the recent TCT 2018 conference indicates that patients with severe symptomatic aortic stenosis and high risk of operative mortality who underwent TAVR had similar 5-year survival and stroke rates compared with those who underwent SAVR.

A study published in Pediatric Research indicates that neonates with congenital heart disease tend to have enlarged kidneys.

The BMI journal Heart has published research suggesting a link between mitral valve prolapse – a common condition – and sudden cardiac death.