OBJECTIVES: Prognosis of patients with anomalous origin of the left coronary artery from pulmonary artery has dramatically improved as a result of both, early diagnosis and improvements in surgical techniques. Post surgical complications are rare and most patients show quick improvement of the left ventricular performance after repair with complete functional recovery within one year after surgery. Exercise-induced electrocardiographic changes have been found in patients postoperatively and scars and perfusion deficits of the left ventricle may not be detected by standard echocardiographic evaluation.
METHODS: Authors present 6 cases of anomalous origin of the left coronary artery from pulmonary artery observed at Martin Univesity Hospital and Pediatric Cardiology Clinic over the last eight-year period. In order to assess the presence of myocardial injury, cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging with late gadolinium enhancement technique was performed in all 6 cases one year after surgical correction.
RESULTS: One patient died 1.5 year after surgical treatment. One year after surgery, the heart size and myocardial functions returned to normal in all patients. Cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated subendocardial late gadolinium enhancement in varios segments of the left ventricle, representing myocardial fibrosis in all patients one year after surgical correction.
CONCLUSION: Because of the presence of scarr tissue, the long term prognosis of these patients remains unclear. The damaged tissue may have arrhythmogenic potential, therefore close follow-up, excercise testing and avoidance of high-level sport activities may be needed.