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Is It Safe to Preserve Left Atrial Appendage During Maze Procedure?

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Affiliated Author(s)
장우성박남희김윤석김재범
Alternative Author(s)
Jang, Woo SungPark, Nam HeeKim, Yun SeokKim, Jae Bum
Journal Title
Korean Circ J
ISSN
1738-5555
Issued Date
2023
Keyword
Atrial fibrillationMaze procedureStroke
Abstract
Background and objectives:
The left atrial appendage (LAA) can contribute significantly to LA mechanical contraction. Nevertheless, the preventive effect of LAA occlusion during the maze procedure against cerebral infarction remains controversial. In this study, we compared the surgical, cardiac hemodynamic, and neurologic outcomes between LAA preservation and occlusion performed during the maze procedure.

Methods:
Between January 2015 and August 2021, 252 patients underwent the maze procedure using cryoablation at our medical center. After excluding patients according to our exclusion criteria (i.e., mechanical prosthesis implantation, preexisting LAA thrombus), LAA was preserved in 113 patients (non-occlusion group) and occluded in 75 patients (occlusion group). Outcomes were compared using propensity score matching (PSM).

Results:
PSM did not reveal significant intergroup differences in baseline characteristics between the non-occlusion (n=53) and occlusion (n=53) groups. During a median follow-up of 44 months, 2 patients in the non-occlusion group (3.8%) experienced ischemic strokes. There was no significant difference in the rate of freedom from stroke (p=0.19) and major adverse cardiac events (p=0.43) between the 2 groups. Through echocardiography at 1-year follow-up, a statistically significant difference in LA mechanical contraction was observed between the non-occlusion group and occlusion group (24 of 33 [72.7%] vs. 18 of 37 [48.6%], respectively; p=0.04).

Conclusions:
In this study, preservation of the LAA during the maze procedure resulted in better LA function than LAA occlusion, with similar rates of stroke.
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