Atherosclerosis Causing Recurrent Catastrophic Aortopulmonary Shunt Dehiscence in a Patient with Alagille Syndrome

May, L.; Hanley, F. L.; Connolly, A. J.; Reddy, S.
December 2013
Pediatric Cardiology;Dec2013, Vol. 34 Issue 8, p1945
Academic Journal
Case Study
Alagille syndrome (ALGS) is an autosomal dominant disorder associated with cholestatic liver disease, pulmonary valvar stenosis or atresia, vasculopathy, and renal disease. Although the liver and cardiac manifestations contribute to overall morbidity and mortality during their life span, these patients also carry a burden of important but often underappreciated vascular abnormalities. This report describes a 3 year-old girl with Alagille syndrome, hepatic cholestasis, systemic hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, hypertriglyceridemia, and tetralogy of Fallot, pulmonary atresia, and major aortopulmonary collaterals (TOF/PA/MAPCAs). She presented for bilateral pulmonary artery plasty and central shunt upsizing. She then experienced three shunt dehiscence episodes, necessitating emergent intervention. Autopsy showed diffuse atherosclerosis and significant atherosclerotic plaque at the site of shunt dehiscence. This is the first reported case of ALGS with TOF/PA/MAPCAs and catastrophic shunt dehiscence due to significant generalized vasculopathy caused by dyslipidemia and atherosclerosis. Dyslipidemia, a known comorbidity in ALGS, is one of few modifiable risk factors that should be screened for and treated, particularly before cardiac surgery.


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