19156 Dodge-Khamati GE.mov (922.48 MB)

Minimal Invasive Right Axillary Thoracotomy for Ventricular Septal Defect Closure: Tips and Pitfalls

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posted on 2023-08-22, 16:12 authored by Ali Dodge-Khatami, Thai Duy Nguyen, Andre Rüffer

This video presents the authors’ technique for minimal invasive ventricular septal defect closure through a mini right axillary thoracotomy, along with technical tips and pitfalls to avoid, after an experience including hundreds of pediatric patients from 4.5 kg infants to adolescents.

The muscle-sparing right axillary thoracotomy has proven to be safe, reproducible, and teachable for the closure of all perimembranous, inlet, and midmuscular VSDs. It can also be selectively extended to include supracristal defects. Full functional recovery of the right arm and shoulder is fast, with shorter ICU and hospital lengths of stay. The axillary incision is remote from breast tissue and avoids future asymmetric breast growth in females. Superior cosmetic results are achieved with a vertical incision, hidden underneath a resting arm.

This method aims to offer children the loss of their stigma of “having a heart problem” with its negative emotional burden, thereby being able to forget their cardiac defect, which is “curable” with one operation.


1. Dodge-Khatami A, Salazar JS. Right axillary thoracotomy for transatrial repair of congenital heart defects: VSD, partial AV canal with mitral cleft, PAPVR or Warden, cor triatriatum, and ASD. Oper Techniques Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2016;20:384-401

2. Prêtre R, Kadner A, Dave H, Dodge-Khatami A, Bettex D, Berger F. Right axillary incision: a cosmetically superior approach to repair a wide range of congenital cardiac defects. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2005;130:277-81.

3. https://youtube/ihnfQGiVDsY

4. https://www.ctsnet.org/article/right-axillary-thoracotomy-transatrial-repair-wide-range-congenital-heart-defects


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