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Valvar Pulmonary Stenosis Differential Diagnoses

  • Author: P Syamasundar Rao, MD; Chief Editor: Howard S Weber, MD, FSCAI  more...
 
Updated: Jun 26, 2014
 
 

Diagnostic Considerations

Important considerations

Exclude associated congenital anomalies and to detect the presence of cyanosis or a ductal-dependent lesion is a major error.

Do not fail to diagnose a serious congenital heart defect, such as tetralogy of Fallot is problematic.

Note the following:

  • Acyanotic patients with tetralogy of Fallot and those with a mild obstruction of the right ventricular outflow tract may have similar presentations and physical findings.
  • Tetralogy of Fallot is a lesion that is surgically correctable and that can be corrected safely, even in the neonatal period.
  • A tet spell, or hypercyanotic spell, is potentially lethal but frequently aborted with simple maneuvers. Such spells and can occur in previously acyanotic patients with tetralogy of Fallot ("pink tets").
  • Echocardiography can reliably confirm the precise diagnosis and help in differentiating valvar pulmonary stenosis from tetralogy of Fallot.

Echocardiography should not be withheld if complex anatomy is suspected.

Complications associated with balloon pulmonary valvuloplasty, such a rupture or perforation of the pulmonary artery or right ventricular outflow tract, are uncommon but can occur. This possibility should be explained to all parents.

Other problems to be considered

Also consider the following conditions in patients with suspected valvar pulmonary stenosis:

  • Complex congenital heart disease associated with findings of pulmonary stenosis
  • Infundibular and/or subpulmonary stenosis
  • Supravalvar pulmonary stenosis
  • Double-chambered right ventricle
  • Syndrome of absent pulmonary valves

Differential Diagnoses

 
 
Contributor Information and Disclosures
Author

P Syamasundar Rao, MD Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Emeritus Chief of Pediatric Cardiology, University of Texas Medical School at Houston and Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital

P Syamasundar Rao, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American Pediatric Society, American College of Cardiology, American Heart Association, Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions, Society for Pediatric Research

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Coauthor(s)

Kurt Pflieger, MD, FAAP Active Staff, Department of Pediatrics, Lake Pointe Medical Center

Kurt Pflieger, MD, FAAP is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Emergency Physicians, American Heart Association, Texas Medical Association

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

Mary L Windle, PharmD Adjunct Associate Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

John W Moore, MD, MPH Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, Section of Pediatic Cardiology, Department of Pediatrics, University of California San Diego School of Medicine; Director of Cardiology, Rady Children's Hospital

John W Moore, MD, MPH is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Cardiology, Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Chief Editor

Howard S Weber, MD, FSCAI Professor of Pediatrics, Section of Pediatric Cardiology, Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine; Director of Interventional Pediatric Cardiology, Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital

Howard S Weber, MD, FSCAI is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Cardiology, Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions

Disclosure: Received income in an amount equal to or greater than $250 from: St. Jude Medical.

Additional Contributors

Jeffrey Allen Towbin, MD, MSc FAAP, FACC, FAHA, Professor, Departments of Pediatrics (Cardiology), Cardiovascular Sciences, and Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine; Chief of Pediatric Cardiology, Foundation Chair in Pediatric Cardiac Research, Texas Children's Hospital

Jeffrey Allen Towbin, MD, MSc is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association for the Advancement of Science, American College of Cardiology, American College of Sports Medicine, American Heart Association, American Medical Association, American Society of Human Genetics, New York Academy of Sciences, Society for Pediatric Research, Texas Medical Association, Texas Pediatric Society, Cardiac Electrophysiology Society

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

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In valvar pulmonic stenosis, the severity of obstruction may be judged by auscultatory findings. In mild stenosis, the ejection click (EC) is clearly separated from the first heart sound (S1). The murmur starts with the click, peaks in early systole, and ends way before the aortic component of the second heart sound (A2) The pulmonary component of the second heart sound (P2) is normal to increased in intensity. In moderate pulmonic stenosis, the click is closer to the first heart sound, the ejection murmur peaks later in the systole and the murmur reaches the A2, and the second heart sound is widely split with soft pulmonary component. In severe valvar obstruction, the click is either absent or occurs so close to S1 that it cannot be heard separately, and the murmur peaks late in systole and extends beyond the A2. The second heart sound is widely split with an extremely soft or inaudible P2. Reproduced from Rao PS: Evaluation of cardiac murmur in children. Indian J Pediatr 1991 Jul-Aug; 58(4): 471-91.
Posteroanterior chest roentgenogram in a patient with valvar pulmonic stenosis showing normal-sized heart with normal pulmonary vascular markings. Note prominent main pulmonary artery (arrow). Reproduced with permission from Rao PS: Diagnosis and management of acyanotic heart disease: Part I – Obstructive lesions. Indian J Pediatr 2005; 72: 495-502.
Doppler flow velocity recordings from the main pulmonary artery prior to (left) and 1 day (center) and 10 months (right) after successful balloon pulmonary valvuloplasty. Note that no significant fall in the peak flow velocity is present on the day after balloon procedure, but a characteristic triangular pattern is present, indicative of infundibular obstruction. At 10-month follow-up, the flow velocity decreased, suggesting resolution of infundibular obstruction. Reproduced with permission from Thapar MK: Significance of infundibular obstruction following balloon valvuloplasty for valvar pulmonic stenosis. Am Heart J 1989; Jul; 118(1): 99-103.
Right ventricular (RV) cineangiogram in lateral view in a child with valvar pulmonary stenosis demonstrating thickened and domed pulmonary valve leaflets and poststenotic dilatation of the pulmonary artery (PA). Reproduced with permission from Rao PS: Diagnosis and management of acyanotic heart disease: Part I – Obstructive lesions. Indian J Pediatr 2005; 72: 495-502.
Selected cineradiographic frames of a balloon dilatation catheter placed across a stenotic pulmonary valve. Note "waisting" of the balloon during the initial phases of the balloon inflation (A), which was almost completely abolished during the later phases of balloon inflation (B). Reproduced from Rao PS: Balloon pulmonary valvuloplasty for isolated pulmonic stenosis. In: Rao PS, ed: Transcatheter Therapy in Pediatric Cardiology New York, NY: Wiley-Liss; 1993: 59-104.
Selected frames from lateral view of the right ventricular (RV) cineangiogram showing severe infundibular stenosis (A) immediately following balloon valvuloplasty (corresponding Media file 3, center). At 10 months after balloon valvuloplasty, the right ventricular outflow tract (B) is wide open and corresponds to Media file 3, right. Peak-to-peak pulmonary valve gradient was 20 mm Hg and no infundibular gradient was present. PA = Pulmonary artery. Reproduced with permission from Thapar MK: Significance of infundibular obstruction following balloon valvuloplasty for valvar pulmonic stenosis. Am Heart J 1989; Jul; 118(1): 99-103.
 
 
 
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