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Patients With Atrial Fibrillation Benefit From SAVR With Surgical Ablation Compared To TAVR Alone
William L. Patrick, Zehang Chen, Joseph E. Bavaria, Jason J. Han, Benjamin Smood, Akhil Rao, Fabliha Khurshan, Siddharth Yarlagadda, Amit Iyengar, John J. Kelly, Joshua C. Grimm, Marisa Cevasco, Nimesh D. Desai.
University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

OBJECTIVE:
In patients with preoperative atrial fibrillation (AF) undergoing aortic valve replacement the addition of surgical ablation to surgical aortic valve replacement (SAVR-SA) is efficacious and a Class I guideline. We hypothesized that this subgroup may benefit from SAVR-SA compared to TAVR alone.
METHODS:
Medicare beneficiaries with persistent non-valvular AF who underwent SAVR-SA or TAVR alone between 2012 and 2018 were included. Patients high-risk surgical comorbidities were excluded. Groups were matched usinginverse probability weighting. The primary outcome was all-cause mortality. Secondary outcomes were stroke, transient ischemic attack, permanent pacemaker implantation, bleeding, rehospitalization for atrial arrhythmias, and rehospitalization for heart failure. Kaplan-Meier estimates and Cox proportional-hazards regression were used to compare outcomes. Outcomes were adjusted for variables with a standardized mean difference >0.1.
RESULTS:
Of 439,492 patients who underwent aortic valve replacement 2,591 underwent SAVR-SA and 1,494 underwent TAVR alone. Weighting resulted in adequately-matched groups. Compared to TAVR alone, SAVR-SA was associated with a significant reduction in all-cause mortality (HR = 0.65, 95% CI 0.53 to 0.79), permanent pacemaker implantation (HR = 0.62, 95% CI 0.44 to 0.87), bleeding (HR = 0.63, 95% CI 0.39 - 1.00), and rehospitalization for heart failure (HR = 0.49 (0.36 - 0.65). There was no difference in the incidence of stroke (HR = 1.07, 95% CI 0.74 to 1.54), transient ischemic attack (HR = 1.05, 95% CI 0.75 to 1.47), or rehospitalization for atrial arrhythmia.
CONCLUSIONS:
Select patients with persistent non-valvular AF may benefit from SAVR-SA compared to TAVR alone.


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