Functional capacity and quality of life in patients with vascular ring

Vered Nir, Lea Bentur, Merav Zucker-Toledano, Michal Gur, Zvi Adler, Moneera Hanna, Yazeed Toukan, Kamal Masarweh, Fahed Hakim, Ronen Bar-Yoseph

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Vascular rings are congenital anomalies of the aortic arch that compress the trachea and esophagus and may require corrective surgery. Data about the long-term effects of vascular rings are scarce. We aimed to evaluate the long-term cardiorespiratory, exercise capacity, and quality of life of vascular ring patients. Methods: A single center prospective study evaluating spirometry, echocardiography, six-minute walk test (6MWT), cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET), and quality of life questionnaire (SF36) in patients with a diagnosis of vascular ring, with or without corrective surgery. Results: Twenty-seven patients participated (11.9 ± 6 years, 52% males). The most common diagnosis was double aortic arch (16 patients, 59%). Nineteen patients had corrective surgery (O) and 8 did not (NO). Pulmonary function tests were within normal range in both groups (FEV1% predicted O = 87.6 ± 16.5, NO = 83 ± 10.8%). However, 11/27 had abnormal FEV1, 5 had abnormal FVC, and 13 (48%) had flattening of the expiratory curve. 6MWD and oxygen uptake were similarly mildly reduced in both groups; (6MWD O = 80.1 ± 10.7% predicted, NO = 74.1 ± 10.9% and oxygen uptake O = 78.5 ± 23.2% predicted, NO = 73.4 ± 14.3%). Peak O2 pulse (V̇O2/HR% predicted) was mildly reduced in the NO group (O = 88.4 ± 17.3%, NO = 75.8 ± 16.2%). Echocardiogram and SF36 scores were normal in all patients. Conclusions: Long-term evaluation of patients born with vascular rings revealed mild pulmonary impairment, reduction in 6MWD, and oxygen uptake. The NO group had also mild reduced peak O2 pulse. Larger, long-term studies assessing functional parameters in operated and non-operated patients are needed to assess disease/surgery limitation in patients with vascular rings. Clinical trial registration number: NCT04781738.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2946-2953
Number of pages8
JournalPediatric Pulmonology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes

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  • CPET
  • quality of life
  • vascular ring


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