(HealthDay News) – People over the age of 80 generally do well after aortic or mitral valve replacement surgery, especially if they are discharged home, according to a study published in the September issue of The Annals of Thoracic Surgery.

Linda Henry, PhD, RN, of the Inova Heart and Vascular Institute in Falls Church, VA, and colleagues examined the variables affecting patient discharge disposition and whether disposition correlated with long-term outcomes in a study involving 307 patients ≥80 years (mean age, 82.9 years) who underwent aortic or mitral valve surgery from 2002–2010.

The researchers found that older, unmarried patients with at least one major complication were significantly more likely to not be discharged home after valve surgery. Cumulative survival was significantly lower at one-year (85.8% vs. 94.6%) and two-years (80.1% vs. 90.3%) for those not discharged home. On multivariable analysis, patients not discharged home had significantly poorer one- and two-year survival (hazard ratio, 2.56 and 2.06, respectively). For those not discharged home, significant predictors of increased mortality included length of stay and any major complication, with lower body mass index marginally significant.

“Overall, octogenarians can expect excellent survival after valve surgery,” the authors write. “However, we found that patients not discharged home after surgery did not experience as robust of outcomes as those patients discharged to home.”

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