Skip to main content

Long-term outcomes after atrial septal defect transcatheter closure by age and against population controls

Abrahamyan L, Dharma C, Alnasser S, Fang J, Austin PC, Lee DS, Osten M, Horlick EM. JACC Cardiovasc Interv. 2021; 14(5):566-75. Epub 2021 Mar 8. DOI:

Objectives — The long-term outcomes after transcatheter closure of atrial septal defects (ASD) in adults are reported and compared between age groups and against population control patients.

Background — ASD is the second most common lesion in congenital heart disease. Comprehensive data on long-term outcomes after ASD closure are limited.

Methods — This retrospective cohort study enrolled adult patients with secundum ASD closure between 1998 and 2016. Information from a detailed clinical registry was linked to population-based administrative databases to capture outcomes. The population control cohort was matched using important prognostic characteristics.

Results — The cohort included 1,390 ASD patients of whom 32% were <40 years of age, 45% were 40 to 60 years of age, and 23% were >60 years of age at closure. The median follow-up was 10.6 years (interquartile range: 6.2 to 14.0 years). New-onset atrial fibrillation (AF) was the most frequent outcome overall (14.9%). The incidence of adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events was higher in the >60 years of age group than in the younger groups. In adjusted analysis, patients >60 years of age continued exhibiting higher risk of all-cause (hazard ratio [HR]: 8.54; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 93.40 to 21.43) and cardiovascular (CV)-specific mortality compared with the <40 years of age group. The risk of new-onset AF (HR: 3.73; 95% CI: 2.79 to 4.98) and any AF hospitalization (HR: 1.55; 95% CI: 1.28 to 1.89) was higher in the ASD than in the control population, whereas there was no difference in all-cause and CV-specific mortality.

Conclusions — As expected, rates of adverse events post-ASD closure are higher in older age groups, but long-term mortality was comparable to that of a population control cohort. The high rates of AF necessitate future investigations.