PURPOSE: The number of maze procedures to treat atrial fibrillation is increasing steadily. However, data regarding the impact of the procedure on late outcome and health related quality of life (QOL) remains scarce. In sthis study, we report the results of our QOL Porgram in patients undergoing the maze procedure with special attention to gender and success rate.
METHODS: Since September 2005, 81 pts were prospectively enrolled, of which 50 were eligible for 6 months follow-up. QOL assessment was achieved using the SF-12. QOL was correlated with early and late outcome as defined by the Society of Thoracic Surgeons. Repeated measures ANOVA, adjusting for EuroSCORE was used to test for QOL changes from baseline to 6-months between gender.
RESULTS: Operative mortality was 4%(n=2). At 6-months, 91% of patients were arrhythmia free. Reponse rate at at 6-months was 82% (n=41). Response rate by gender: females, 12/16 (75%); males, 29/34 (85%). Baseline scores for females were signficantly lower for both Composite Mental (CM: 46.3 vs. 52.7, p<0.05) and Composite Physical (CP: 35.4 vs. 43.9, p<0.05). Both genders showed signficant improvement at 6-months, however, females demonstrated greater improvement in QOL. No differences at 6-months for either CM (52.7 vs. 53.9) or CP (47.2 vs. 47.1) were observed. Perioperative complications and arrhythmia-free status had no negative effect on QOL at 6-months. However, compared to all other groups, male patients with arrhythmia demonstrated decreasing scores for CM (−8%, p<0.05).
CONCLUSION: Improvements in QOL following the maze procedure can be expected as early as 6-months postoperatively, independent of gender.
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: At 6-months, female patients experienced greater increases in QOL compared to males. Male patients with persistent arrhythmia experienced a negative trend in QOL.
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