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Heart, Lung and Circulation

Balloon Pulmonary Angioplasty in Patients With Inoperable or Recurrent/Residual Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension: A Single-Centre Initial Experience

Published:November 24, 2021DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.hlc.2021.10.009

      Background

      Patients with inoperable chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) are often treated with pulmonary arterial hypertension-specific drugs. However, most of these patients remain symptomatic, despite medical treatment. Balloon pulmonary angioplasty (BPA) is an emerging therapeutic intervention for patients with inoperable CTEPH. This study aimed to report the initial experience of BPA in a tertiary referral centre for CTEPH.

      Methods

      A total of 26 consecutive patients, who underwent 91 BPA sessions, were included in the study. All patients underwent a detailed examination, including 6-minute walking distance (6MWD), and right heart catheterisation at baseline and 3 months after the last BPA session.

      Results

      The mean age of the patients was 51±17 years. Fifteen (15) patients had inoperable CTEPH and 11 patients had residual or recurrent CTEPH post pulmonary endarterectomy (PEA). Functional class improved in 17 of 26 (65%) patients. The 6MWD increased from a mean 315±129 to 411±140 m (p<0.001), and NT pro-BNP reduced from a median 456 to 189 pg/mL (p=0.001). The number of patients who required supplemental oxygen decreased from 11 (42.3%) to five (19%) (p=0.031) after BPA treatment. The mean pulmonary artery pressure decreased from a mean 47.5±13.4 to 38±10.9 mmHg (p<0.001), the pulmonary vascular resistance decreased from a mean 9.3±4.7 to 5.8±2.8 Wood units (p<0.001), and the cardiac index increased from a mean 2.4±0.7 to 2.9±0.6 L/min/m2 (p=0.008).

      Conclusions

      Balloon pulmonary angioplasty improved haemodynamics, 6MWD, and functional class, and reduced the requirement for supplemental oxygen, with an acceptable risk-benefit ratio in patients with inoperable CTEPH and with residual/recurrent CTEPH.

      Keywords

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