Conference Coverage

No matter the valve, protective device cuts post-TAVR stroke risk



– A retrospective study and combined meta-analysis of patients undergoing transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) confirms the protective effect of the Sentinel cerebral embolic protection (CEP) device, regardless of the valve type used, on periprocedural stroke and mortality.

Dr. Julia Seeger of University of Ulm, Germany Jim Kling/MDedge News

Dr. Julia Seeger

“The only significant predictor for being stroke free was use of the protective device. If you look at different valve types, you have an effect with use of the protection device with each of them,” Julia Seeger, MD, said in an interview at the Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics annual meeting.The finding just reinforces a decision that the institution made several years ago, to uniformly use embolic protection in TAVR procedures. Asked if she was convinced by the latest data on the utility of the device, she replied “Yes, definitely.”

Use of the device adds only a couple of minutes to the procedure time, and there haven’t been any adverse events associated with it, and no additional imaging agent was required, said Dr. Seeger, an interventional cardiologist at the University of Ulm (Germany).

The studies included patients being treated with the Medtronic CoreValve/Evolut, the mechanically implantable Boston Scientific Lotus, and the balloon-expandable Edwards Sapien. Subanalyses for all three valve types showed strong trends for reduction of strokes and mortality. Sentinel is the only Food and Drug Administration–approved device for reduction of strokes during TAVR procedures.

The Sentinel and Clean-TAVI trials showed the efficacy of the Sentinel device in reducing the number and volume of periprocedural cerebral lesions, but there were insufficient randomized data to draw conclusions about its relative efficacy among valve types. Dr. Seeger’s team analyzed data from 984 consecutive TAVR patients. The Sentinel device was used in 548, and not used in 436 consecutive patients. Self-expandable valves were used significantly more often in patients who underwent the procedure with CEP (22% vs. 6.0%). In the study population, 590 balloon-expandable valves, 246 mechanically implantable valves, and 148 self-expandable valves were used.

In the 72 hours after the procedure, mortality or stroke was lower in the CEP group (1.5% versus 4.4%, P less than .01), as was disabling stroke (0.6% versus 3.2%, P less than .01). When results were analyzed by valve types, the researchers found a relative risk reduction for all stroke of 76% with the use of CEP with balloon-expandable devices, 68% with mechanically expandable devices, and 57% with self-expandable devices.

The researchers also conducted a patient-level meta-analysis, incorporating data on 1,306 subjects with symptomatic severe aortic stenosis, including 363 from the Sentinel trial (243 with CEP), 100 patients from the CLEAN-TAVI trial (1:1 randomization to CEP), and 843 patients from the Sentinel-Ulm study (423 with CEP).

They matched patients for valve type, Society of Thoracic Surgeons’ risk score, atrial fibrillation, diabetes, sex, coronary artery disease, and peripheral vascular disease. The all-procedural stroke rate was 5.4% in patients who did not receive CEP, and 1.9% in those who did, for a risk reduction of 65%. Similarly, 72-hour mortality stroke risk was reduced by 66% with the CEP device. It occurred in 6.0% of non-CEP patients, compared to 2.1% of the CEP patients.

The meeting was sponsored by the Cardiovascular Research Foundation.

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