What is the role of surgical ligation in the treatment of patent ductus arteriosus (PDA)?

Updated: Nov 20, 2018
  • Author: Luke K Kim, MD; Chief Editor: Stuart Berger, MD  more...
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Surgical ligation or surgical ligation and division remain the standard treatment of large patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) that require treatment in infancy (see the following image). This is a particularly successful, low-risk procedure in the hands of an experienced pediatric cardiovascular surgeon. This is true even in the smallest premature babies. (See also Patent Ductus Arteriosus Surgery.)

Diagram illustrating ligation of the patent ductus Diagram illustrating ligation of the patent ductus arteriosus.

Ligation (with or without division of the patent ductus arteriosus [PDA]) without cardiopulmonary bypass can be performed through a left posterolateral thoracotomy. Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) ligation of patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) is less invasive than the posterolateral thoracotomy and has been shown to be safe and effective. [24]

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