Surgical management of mitral valve disease in infants and children has been a major therapeutic challenge for many years. It poses special surgical difficulties because of the wide spectrum of morphological abnormalities requiring meticulous modifications of the valve repair techniques, a high incidence of associated cardiac anomalies, and relatively limited experience in each surgical center. At our institution, mitral valve (MV) reconstruction is the preferred technique for any kind of MV disease in infants, children, and adolescents. This avoids the need for valve replacement with all its drawbacks, particularly in infants and small children, in the face of the complete lack of prostheses suitable for this age group. Even when the primary repair result is not optimal, time is gained for repeated repair until an appropriate adult-size prosthesis can be implanted. We believe that reconstruction allows for valve growth without the need of anticoagulation. This is best achieved by using a spectrum of repair techniques applied individually and avoiding any prosthetic material. We have reviewed our 20-year experience with surgical reconstruction of the MV in pediatric age groups to assess our techniques and determine early and long-term survival and freedom from reoperation and valve replacement.
KeywordsMitral Valve Papillary Muscle Mitral Stenosis Mitral Valve Repair Mitral Valve Disease
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