Transseptal puncture (TSP) is a standard procedure to obtain access to the left heart. However, data on TSP in infants and children particularly with congenital heart defects (CHD) is sparse. Safety and efficacy of TSP in infants and children < 18 years with normal cardiac anatomy and with CHD were assessed. 327 TSP were performed in a total of 300 individuals < 18 years from 10/2002 to 09/2018 in our tertiary pediatric referral center. Median age at TSP was 11.9 years (IQR 7.8-15; range: first day of life to 17.9 years). 13 subjects were < 1 year. Median body weight was 43.8 kg (IQR 26.9-60; range: 1.8-121 kg). CHD was present in 28/327 (8.6%) procedures. TSP could be successfully performed in 323/327 (98.8%) procedures and was abandoned in 4 procedures due to imminent or incurred complications. Major complications occurred in 4 patients. 3 of these 4 subjects were ≤ 1 year of age and required TSP for enlargement of a restrictive atrial septal defect in complex CHD. Two of these babies deceased within 48 h after TSP attempt. The third baby needed urgent surgery in the cath lab. Pericardial effusion requiring drainage was noted in the forth patient (> 1 year) who was discharged well later. Minor complications emerged in 5 patients. The youngest of these individuals (0.3 years, 5.8 kg) developed small pericardial effusion after anterograde ballon valvuloplasty for critical aortic stenosis. The remaining 4/5 patients developed small pericardial effusion after ablation of a left-sided accessory atrioventricular pathway (6.1-12.2 years, 15.6-34.0 kg). TSP for access to the left heart was safe and effective in children and adolescents > 1 year of age. However, TSP was a high-risk procedure in small infants with a restrictive interatrial septum with need for enlargement of interatrial communication.
Pediatr Cardiol (Pediatric cardiology)
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