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עמוד בית
Wed, 06.12.23

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March 2022
Israel Mazin MD, Ori Vaturi MD, Rafael Kuperstein MD, Roy Beigel MD, Micha Feinberg MD, and Sagit Ben Zekry MD

Background: Estimated frequency of aortic stenosis (AS) in those over 75 years of age is 3.4%. Symptomatic patients with severe AS have increased morbidity and mortality and aortic valve replacement should be offered to improve life expectancy and quality of life.

Objectives: To identify whether systolic time intervals can identify severe AS.

Methods: The study comprised 200 patients (mean age 79 years, 55% men). Patients were equally divided into normal, mild, moderate, or severe AS. All patients had normal ejection fraction. Acceleration time (AT) was defined as the time from the beginning of systolic flow to maximal velocity; ejection time (ET) was the time from onset to end of systolic flow. The relation of AT/ET was calculated. Death or aortic valve intervention were documented.

AT increased linearly with the severity of AS, similar to ET and AT/ET ratio (P for trend < 0.05 for all). Receiver-operator characteristic curve analysis demonstrated that AT can identify severe AS with a cutoff ≥ 108 msec with 100% sensitivity and 98% specificity, while a cutoff of 0.34 when using AT/ET ratio can identify severe AS with 96% sensitivity and 94% specificity. Multivariate analysis adjusting to sex, stroke volume index, heart rate, and body mass index showed similar results. Kaplan-Meier curve for AT ≥ 108 and AT/ET ≥ 0.34 predicted death or aortic valve intervention in a 3-year follow-up.

Conclusions: Acceleration time and AT/ET ratio are reliable measurements for identifying patients with severe AS. Furthermore, AT and AT/ET were able to predict aortic valve replacement or death

July 2021
Jacob Weinstein MD, Amichai Shinfeld MD, Michal Simchen MD, Tal Cahan MD, Jonathan Frogel MD, Michael Arad MD, Haim Berkenstadt MD, and Rafael Kuperstein MD

Background: Pregnant women with Marfan syndrome (MS) have a high risk of aortic dissection around delivery and their optimal management requires a multi-disciplinary approach, including proper cardio-obstetric care and adequate pain management during labor, which may be difficult due to the high prevalence of dural ectasia (DE) in these patients.

Objectives: To evaluate the multidisciplinary management of MS patients during labor.

Methods: Nineteen pregnant women (31 pregnancies) with MS were followed by a multi-disciplinary team (cardiologist, obstetrician, anesthesiologist) prior to delivery.

Results:. Two patients had kyphoscoliosis; none had previous spine surgery nor complaints compatible with DE. In eight pregnancies (7 patients), aortic root diameter (ARd) before pregnancy was 40 to 46 mm. In this high-risk group, one patient underwent elective termination, two underwent an urgent cesarean section (CS) under general anesthesia, and five had elective CS; two under general anesthesia (GA), and three under spinal anesthesia. In 23 pregnancies (12 patients), ARd was < 40 mm. In this non-high-risk group three pregnancies (1 patient) were electively terminated. Of the remaining 20 deliveries (11 patients), 14 were vaginal deliveries, 9 with epidural analgesia and 5 without. Six patients had a CS; four under GA and two2 under spinal anesthesia. There were no epidural placement failures and no failed responses. There were 2 cases of aortic dissection, unrelated to the anesthetic management.

Conclusions: The optimal anesthetic strategy during labor in MS patients should be decided by a multi-disciplinary team. Anesthetic complications due to DE were not encountered during neuraxial block

February 2019
Olga Perelshtein Brezinov MD, Michal J. Simchen MD, Sagit Ben Zekry MD and Rafael Kuperstein MD

Background: Rheumatic mitral stenosis (MS) is a relatively rare diagnosis in the developed countries and its treatment during pregnancy is challenging due to hemodynamic changes. With the demographic changes due to recent waves of immigration an increase in the prevalence of rheumatic heart disease is expected.

Objective: To evaluate maternal and neonatal complications in patients with mitral stenosis.

Methods: During the years 2006–2017, 22 women who underwent 31 pregnancies were followed at the Sheba Medical Center in Israel. We collected on regarding hemodynamic changes and their clinical course. MS was classified as mild, moderate, or severe according to mitral valve area by echocardiography. Maternal and fetal adverse events were evaluated according to severity of MS and compared by Poisson regression modeling.

Results: MS was severe in 7 pregnancies (22.6%), moderate in 9 (29%), and mild in 15 (48.4%). Twenty patients were managed conservatively and 2 underwent a successful percutaneous mitral balloon valvuloplasty (PBMVP) during pregnancy. All pregnancies ended with a liveborn neonate and with no maternal mortality. Peak and mean mitral pressure gradients increased during pregnancy from 13.3 ± 5.3 to 18.6 ± 5.1 mmHg and from 5.9 ± 2.3 to 9.6 ± 3.4 mmHg respectively (P < 0.05). Eight pregnancies (25.8%) were complicated by pulmonary congestion, 2/15 (13.3%) with mild MS, 2/9 (22.2%) with moderate, and 4/7 (57.1%) with severe MS. The adverse event rate was higher among patients with severe MS compared with moderate and mild MS [hazard ratio (HR) 3.15, 95% confidence interval (95%CA) 1.04–9.52 and HR 4.06, 95%CI 1.4–11.19 respectively, P < 0.05]. Nine of 31 deliveries were vaginal; 6 of 22 cesarean sections (27.3%) were performed for cardiac indications.

Conclusions: The number of total adverse events were higher among patients with severe MS. Patients with moderate and mild MS should be treated attentively, but good obstetric and maternal outcome can be expected.


February 2016
Amjad Shalabi MD, Ehud Raanani MD, Amihai Shinfeld MD, Rafael Kuperstein MD, Alexander Kogan MD, Alexander Lipey MD, Eyal Nachum MD and Dan Spiegelstein MD

Background: Prolonged life expectancy has increased the number of elderly high risk patients referred for surgical aortic valve replacement (AVR). These referred high risk patients may benefit from sutureless bioprosthesis procedures which reduce mortality and morbidity.

Objectives: To present our initial experience with sutureless aortic bioprotheses, including clinical and echocardiographic results, in elderly high risk patients referred for AVR. 

Methods: Forty patients (15 males, mean age 78 ± 7 years) with symptomatic severe aortic stenosis underwent AVR with the 3F Enable™ or Perceval™ sutureless bioprosthesis during the period December 2012 to May 2014. Mean logistic EuroScore was 10 ± 3%. Echocardiography was performed preoperatively, intraoperatively, at discharge and at follow-up.

Results: There was no in-hospital mortality. Nine patients (22%) underwent minimally invasive AVR via a right anterior mini-thoracotomy and one patient via a J-incision. Four patients underwent concomitant coronary aortic bypass graft, two needed intraoperative repositioning of the valve, one underwent valve exchange due to inappropriate sizing, three (7.5%) had a perioperative stroke with complete resolution of neurologic symptoms, and one patient (2.5%) required permanent pacemaker implantation due to complete atrioventricular block. Mean preoperative and postoperative gradients were 44 ± 14 and 13 ± 5 mmHg, respectively. At follow-up, 82% of patients were in New York Heart Association functional class I and II.

Conclusions: Sutureless AVR can be used safely in elderly high risk patients with relatively low morbidity and mortality. The device can be safely implanted via a minimally invasive incision. Mid-term hemodynamic results are satisfactory, demonstrating significant clinical improvement.


January 2016
Amir Givon MD, Natalia Vedernikova MD, David Luria MD, Ori Vatury MD, Rafael Kuperstein MD, Micha S. Feinberg MD, Michael Eldar MD, Michael Glikson MD and Eyal Nof MD

Background: Transvenous lead extraction can lead to tricuspid valve damage. 

Objectives: To assess the incidence, risk factors and clinical outcome of tricuspid regurgitation (TR) following lead extraction.

Methods: We prospectively collected data on patients who underwent lead extraction at the Sheba Medical Center prior to laser use (i.e., before 2012). Echocardiography results before and following the procedure were used to confirm TR worsening, defined as an echocardiographic increase of at least one TR grade. Various clinical and echocardiographic parameters were analyzed as risk factors for TR. Clinical and echocardiographic follow-up was conducted to assess the clinical significance outcome of extraction-induced TR.

Results: Of 152 patients who underwent lead extraction without laser before 2012, 86 (56%) (192 electrodes) had echocardiography results before and within one week following the procedure. New or worsening TR was discovered in 13 patients (15%). Use of mechanical tools and younger age at extraction were found on multivariate analysis to be factors for TR development (P = 0.04 and P = 0.03 respectively). Average follow-up was 22.25 ± 21.34 months (range 8–93). There were no significant differences in the incidence of right-sided heart failure (50% vs. 23%, P = 0.192) or hospitalizations due to heart failure exacerbations (37.5% vs. 11%, P = 0.110). No patient required tricuspid valve repair or replacement. Death rates were similar in the TR and non-TR groups (20% vs. 33%).

Conclusions: TR following lead extraction is not uncommon but does not seem to affect survival or outcomes such as need for valve surgery. Its long-term effects remain to be determined. 


May 2014
Eyal Lotan MD MSc, David Orion MD, Mati Bakon MD, Rafael Kuperstein MD and Gahl Greenberg MD
March 2014
Orly Goitein, Yishay Salem, Jeffrey Jacobson, David Goitein, David Mishali, Ashraf Hamdan, Rafael Kuperstein, Elio Di Segni and Eli Konen
 Background: Patients with complex congenital heart disease (CHD) have a high incidence of extracardiac vascular and non-vascular malformations. Those additional abnormalities may have an impact on the precise planning of surgical or non-surgical treatment.

Objectives: To assess the role of electrocardiography-gated CT-angiography (ECG-CTA) in the routine evaluation of CHD in neonates and infants particularly for the assessment of extracardiac findings.

Methods: The study cohort comprised 40 consecutive patients who underwent trans-thoracic echocardiography (TTE) and ECG-CTA. TTE and ECG-gated CTA findings regarding extracardiac vascular structures, coronary arteries and airways were compared with surgical or cardiac catheterization findings. Scans were evaluated for image quality using a subjective visual scale (from 1 to 4). Effective radiation dose was calculated for each scan.

Results: Median age was 28 ± 88 days and mean weight 3.7 ± 1.5 kg. Diagnostic quality was good or excellent (visual image score 3–4) in 39 of 40 scans (97.5%). ECG-CTA provided important additional information regarding extracardiac vascular structures and airway anatomy, complementing TTE in 75.6% of scans. Overall sensitivity of ECG-gated CTA for detecting extracardiac findings as compared with operative and cardiac catheterization findings was 97.6%. The calculated mean effective radiation dose was 1.4 ± 0.07 mSv (range 1.014–2.3 mSv).

Conclusions: ECG-CTA is an accurate modality for demonstrating extracardiac structures in complex CHD. It provides important complementary information to TTE regarding extracardiac vascular structures and coronary artery anatomy. This modality may obviate the need for invasive cardiac catheterization, thus exposing the patient to a much lower radiation dose. 

August 2011
O. Goitein, R. Beigel, S. Matetzky, R. Kuperstein, S. Brosh, Y. Eshet, E. Di Segni and E. Konen

Background: Coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA) is an established modality for ruling out coronary artery disease. However, it has been suggested that CCTA may be a source of non-negligible radiation exposure.

Objectives: To evaluate the potential degradation in coronary image quality when using prospective gated (PG) CCTA as compared with retrospective gated (RG) CCTA in chest pain evaluation.

Methods: The study cohort comprised 216 patients: 108 consecutive patients in the PG CCTA arm and 108 patients matched for age, gender and heart rate in the RG CCTA arm. Scans were performed using a 64-slice multidetector CT scanner. All 15 coronary segments were evaluated subjectively for image quality using a 5-point visual scale. Dose-length product was recorded for each patient and the effective radiation dose was calculated

Results: The PG CCTA technique demonstrated a significantly higher incidence of step artifacts in the middle and distal right coronary artery, the distal left anterior descending artery, the second diagonal, the distal left circumflex artery, and the second marginal branches. Nevertheless, the diagnostic performance of these scans was not adversely affected. The mean effective radiation doses were 3.8 ± 0.9 mSv vs.17.2 ± 3 mSv for PG CCTA and RG CCTA, respectively (P < 0.0001).

Conclusions: Artifacts caused by the PG CCTA technique (64 MDCT) scanners tended to appear in specific coronary segments but did not impair the overall diagnostic quality of CCTA and there was a marked reduction in radiation exposure. We conclude that 64-slice PG CCTA is suitable for clinical use, especially for acute chest pain "fast track" evaluation targeted at relatively young subjects in a chest pain unit.

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