Continuous or interrupted pledgeted suture technique in stented bioprosthetic aortic valve replacement: a comparison of in-hospital outcomes

Bardia Arabkhani*, Sebastien Gonthier, Veronica Lorenz, Samuel Deschamps, Jama Jahanyar, Marin Boute, David Vancraeynest, Stefano Mastrobuoni, Gebrine El Khoury, Laurent de Kerchove

*Corresponding author for this work

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There is ambiguity in the literature regarding the continuous suture technique (CST) for aortic valve replacement (AVR). At our center, there has been a gradual shift towards CST over the interrupted pledgeted technique (IPT). This study aims at comparing outcomes for both techniques. 


We performed a retrospective analysis of a single-center study of patients undergoing AVR between January 2011 and July 2020. Patients were divided into two groups: Continuous suture technique and interrupted pledget-reinforced sutures. The pre-operative and In-hospital clinical characteristics and echocardiographic hemodynamics (i.e. transvalvular gradients and paravalvular leakage) were compared between CST and IPT. 


We compared 791 patients with CST to 568 patients with IPT (median age: 73 and 74 years, respectively, p = 0.02). In CST there were 35% concomitant procedure vs. 31% in IPT (p = 0.16). Early mortality was 3.2% in CST versus 4.8% in IPT (p = 0.15), and a second cross-clamp due to a paravalvular-leak in 0.5% vs. 1.2%, respectively (p = 0.22). The CST was not associated with new-onset conduction-blocks mandating pacemaker implants(OR 1.07, 95% CI 0.54–2.14; P = 0.85). The postoperative gradients on echocardiography were lower in CST compared to IPT, especially in smaller annuli (peak gradients: 15.7mmHg vs. 20.5mmHg, in valve size < 23 mm, p < 0.001). 


The continuous suture technique was associated with lower postoperative gradients and shorter cross-clamp time compared to interrupted pledgeted technique. Differences in paravalvular leaks were non-significant, although slightly less in the continuous suture technique. There were no further differences in valve-related complications. Hence, continues suture technique is safe, with better hemodynamics compared to the interrupted pledgeted technique. This may be of clinical importance, especially in smaller size annular size.

Original languageEnglish
Article number174
JournalJournal of Cardiothoracic Surgery
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 4 Apr 2024

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