Incidence and effect of early postoperative ventricular arrhythmias after congenital heart surgery

Published:December 04, 2018DOI:


      Postoperative arrhythmias after pediatric congenital heart disease (CHD) surgery are a known cause of morbidity and are associated with mortality. A comprehensive evaluation of early postoperative ventricular arrhythmias (VAs) after CHD surgery has not been reported.


      We sought to determine the incidence of in-hospital VAs after CHD surgery and assess the clinical relevance of this arrhythmia during the postoperative hospital course.


      Patients undergoing CHD surgery at our center from September 2007 through December 2016 were prospectively enrolled. Univariate and multivariate analysis was used to assess the association between postoperative VAs and in-hospital mortality, adjusting for postoperative extracorporeal membrane oxygenation and stage 1 single ventricle palliation operations.


      A total of 2503 postoperative courses in 1835 patients were included. In all, 464 (18.5%) had VAs, of whom 135 (29.1%) received treatment. Monomorphic ventricular tachycardia was the most frequently treated ventricular arrhythmia (TVA; n=91 [62.3%]). TVAs were associated with increased postoperative extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (13.3% vs 5.5%; P < .001) and in-hospital mortality (14.9% vs 4.0%; P < .001). In multivariate analysis, TVA was an independent risk factor for in-hospital mortality (adjusted odds ratio 2.44; 95% confidence interval 1.21–4.92).


      Early postoperative VAs after CHD surgery are more common than previously reported. Postoperative VAs are associated with increased in-hospital mortality, and the subgroup of TVAs is an independent risk factor for in-hospital mortality.


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