The goal of this study was to determine the outcome of patients undergoing an elective frozen elephant trunk (FET) procedure as a redo operation following previous cardiac surgery.
One hundred and eighteen consecutive patients underwent FET procedures between October 2010 and October 2019 at our centre. Patients were registered in a dedicated database and analysed retrospectively. Clinical and follow-up characteristics were compared between patients undergoing a FET operation as a primary (primary group) or a redo procedure (redo group) using logistic regression and Cox regression analysis. Emergency procedures (n = 33) were excluded from the analysis.
A total of 36.5% (n = 31) of the FET procedures were redo operations (redo group) and 63.5% (n = 54) of the patients underwent primary surgery (primary group). There was no significant difference in the 30-day mortality [primary group: 7.4%; redo group: 3.2%; 95% confidence interval (CI) (0.19–35.29); P = 0.63] and the 3-year mortality [primary group: 22.2%; redo group: 16.7%; 95% CI (0.23–3.23); P = 0.72] between redo and primary cases. Furthermore, the adjusted statistical analysis did not reveal significant differences between the groups in the occurrence of transient or permanent neurological deficit, paraplegia, acute renal failure and resternotomy. The redo group showed a higher rate of recurrent nerve palsy, which did not reach statistical significance [primary group: 3.7% (n = 2); redo group: 19.4% (n = 6); P = 0.091].
Elective FET procedures as redo operations performed by a dedicated aortic team following previous cardiac surgery demonstrate an adequate safety profile.