Closed Mitral Valvotomy-a Life Saving Procedure in Facility Deprived Countries: Experience at Muhimbili National Hospital, Tanzania.
Background: Rheumatic heart disease remains a major health cardiac problem in developing countries as the culprit of rheumatic fever. Mitral valve stenosis is the most common complication of valvular heart disease and its consequences of increase in pulmonary hypertension, heart failure, pulmonary vascular disease and if untreated death ensues. The management of this condition varies depending on availability of expertise and resource; however in a facility deprived country with low economic status closed mitral valvotomy remain the standard palliative treatment! The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical status of patients with mitral stenosis following closed mitral valvotomy treated at Muhimbili National Hospital, Cardiothoracic Unit. Methods: All patients presenting with severe mitral stenosis in absence of calcification in its leaflets and regurgitation were enrolled for the study from May 2008 to November 2009. Excluded were those who failure consents. Results:A total of fourteen patients were included in the study of which 10 (71.4%) were females and 4 (28.6%) were males. They had a mean age of 21.5±8.8 and range from 11 to 41 years. The diagnosis was based on clinical evaluation using NYHA class and 2D-Echocardiography findings. All patients’ demographic data, preoperative and post operative findings were taken and data analysis was done using an SPSS 11.5 program. Categorical data were compared and analyzed using two Tailed- χ2 and values were taken 5% significance level. Conclusion: There was an overall highly significant improvement in clinical stage of the disease, reduction in mean pressure gradient across the mitral valve, reduction in pulmonary hypertension and mean left atrial size. Similarly there was improvement in ventricular function in terms of ejection fraction and increase in mean mitral valve area.