Investigating a Minimally Invasive Alternative to Surgery for Transverse Aortic Arch Obstruction

Investigating a Minimally Invasive Alternative to Surgery for Transverse Aortic Arch Obstruction 150 150 Erin Gregory

A new study evaluates the safety and efficacy of percutaneous balloon-expandable stents for transverse aortic arch obstruction, a form of congenital heart disease.

A new study published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Interventions, conducted by Arash Salavitabar, MD, FSCAI, FPICS, FACC, FAAP, a congenital interventional cardiologist at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, and colleagues, evaluates the efficacy and safety of percutaneous balloon-expandable stents for treating transverse aortic arch obstruction. The research aims to evaluate a minimally invasive alternative to traditional surgery, offering the potential of shorter recovery times and reduced procedural risks.

“Transverse aortic arch obstruction can be a very challenging problem to treat and can be a cause of several long-term issues. Our multicenter study highlights effective treatment within the cardiac catheterization lab and summarizes its outcomes,” says Dr. Salavitabar.

Methodology and Data Analysis

Researchers collected and examined data from several centers to assess the technical, procedural, and long-term clinical outcomes of stent implantations in patients with a median age of 14 years. Advanced statistical methods were used to identify how patient and procedural characteristics related to success rates and complications, aiding in the refinement of techniques and improvement of future treatment approaches.

Key Findings and Clinical Implications
The study demonstrated excellent results of this procedure, with a 100% technical success rate of ending the procedure with a stent in the intended position and an 88% procedural success rate, demonstrating effective outcomes for the vast majority of interventions. This treatment also significantly improved hypertension management, a common complication of aortic obstructions.

This study identified trends in stent-related and procedure-related complications, as well as the need for reintervention. By compiling this data on a larger scale across multiple centers, strategies were identified to reduce these risks for future patients. Through this work, those events that can be targets of improvement with future procedural approaches and stent choices. “This study emphasizes the need for thoughtful patient selection and improved strategies,” says Dr. Salavitabar.

“Stent technology plays a crucial role in our ability to successfully implement this treatment approach for transverse aortic arch obstruction,” adds Dr. Salavitabar. “Open-cell stents are favored for their adaptability and long-term advantages. It is vital that we maintain access to these stents and secure approvals for their varied uses in treating congenital heart disease, and also push forward with newer innovations tailored for smaller patients.”

These findings bring to light the immediate and sustained benefits of stent implantation in the treatment of transverse aortic arch obstruction and in augmenting hypertension management, but also emphasize the need for ongoing monitoring and the potential need for future interventions.

Professional Recommendations

Given the potential complexity of patient-specific factors, such as weight and aortic anatomy, meticulous pre-procedural evaluation and patient selection are vital. The researchers emphasized rigorous post-procedure monitoring using advanced imaging to promptly identify and address potential complications.

“At Nationwide Children’s, we pride ourselves on personalizing interventions for patients with complex congenital heart disease, utilizing advanced imaging and both transcatheter and surgical technologies to tailor treatment,” says Dr. Salavitabar.

“Ongoing advancements in stent design and attention to procedural techniques are essential to improving procedural success and to minimizing the need for reinterventions,” he adds.



Salavitabar A, Eisner M, Armstrong AK, et al. Percutaneous Balloon-Expandable Stent Implantation to Treat Transverse Aortic Arch Obstruction: Medium- to Long-Term Outcomes of a Retrospective Multicenter Study. Circ Cardiovasc Interv. Published online April 26, 2024. doi:10.1161/CIRCINTERVENTIONS.123.013729


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