Publication Date



The Texas Heart Institute Journal





Publication Date(s)

August 2020





PubMedCentral® Posted Date


PubMedCentral® Full Text Version


Published Open-Access



Embolism/etiology/prevention & control, foramen ovale, patent/complications/diagnostic imaging/surgery/therapy, heart atria/abnormalities/complications, ischemic attack, transient/etiology/prevention & control, recurrence, retrospective studies, risk factors, secondary prevention, stroke/prevention & control, treatment outcome


Percutaneous closure of patent foramen ovale (PFO) is widely performed to prevent recurrent stroke or transient ischemic attack in patients with cryptogenic stroke. However, the influence of different degrees of right-to-left shunting (RLS) has rarely been reported.

We retrospectively evaluated the cases of 268 patients with cryptogenic stroke who underwent PFO closure at our hospital from April 2012 through April 2015. In accordance with RLS severity, we divided the patients into 2 groups: persistent RLS during normal breathing and the Valsalva maneuver (n=112) and RLS only during the Valsalva maneuver (n=156). Baseline characteristics, morphologic features, and procedural and follow-up data were reviewed. The primary endpoint was stroke or transient ischemic attack.

More patients in the persistent group had multiple or bilateral ischemic lesions, as well as a larger median PFO diameter (2.5 mm [range, 1.8–3.9 mm]) than did patients in the Valsalva maneuver group (1.3 mm [range, 0.9–1.9 mm]) (PP=0.018). Three patients in the persistent group had residual shunting. The annual risk of recurrent ischemic stroke was similar between groups: 0.298% (persistent) and 0.214% (Valsalva maneuver).

Our findings suggest that patients with persistent RLS have more numerous severe ischemic lesions, larger PFOs, and a higher incidence of atrial septal aneurysm than do those without. Although our persistent group had a greater risk of residual shunting after PFO closure, recurrence of ischemic events did not differ significantly from that in the Valsalva maneuver group.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.