Background: The rapid development of transcatheter treatment methods has made transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) a feasible alternative to conventional surgical aortic valve replacement (SAVR). Recently, indications for TAVR have been expanded to intermediate- and low-risk patients, although there still remains a portion of ineligible patients. We sought to evaluate and compare our experience with sutureless SAVR and transapical TAVR in the «grey-area» of patients unsuitable for transfemoral access.
Methods: Between April 2018 and June 2021, 248 consecutive patients underwent a sutureless SAVR (SU-SAVR) or TA-TAVR at our institution. We performed a pair-matched analysis and identified 56 patient pairs based on the EuroSCORE II. All transcatheter procedures were performed using SAPIEN XT/3™ prostheses, while all surgical procedures deployed the Perceval (LivaNova) aortic valve.
Results: All patients presented with multiple comorbidities as reflected by the median EuroSCORE-II of 3.1% (IQR 1.9-5.3). Thirty-four patients from the surgical group (60.7%) underwent a concomitant myocardial revascularization. There was no significant difference in major adverse events, pacemaker implantation or postoperative mortality during follow-up. Both interventions demonstrated technical success with similar mean postoperative pressure gradients at follow-up and no cases of paravalvular leakage.
Conclusions: Sutureless aortic valve replacement constitutes a feasible treatment alternative for patients with aortic valve disease who are ineligible for transfemoral access route and/or require concomitant coronary revascularization. With its excellent hemodynamic performance, similar survival compared to TA-TAVR, and high cost-efficiency without compromising the postoperative outcomes and in-hospital length of stay SU-AVR might be considered for patients in the «grey-area» between TAVR and SAVR.