Electrocardiographic-gated nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) imaging has been shown to be effective for the evaluation of congenital heart disease, particularly in supracardiac regions. This study evaluated the postoperative status after a stage I palliative operation (Norwood procedure) for hypoplastic left heart syndrome. The NMR images from three patients were compared with those of angiography and depicted all components of the reconstructed supracardiac and intracardiac anatomy after this operation. Nonobstructive anastomosis of the main pulmonary artery to the proximal aorta was clearly demonstrated in each patient. The caliber of the central or branch pulmonary artery, patency and caliber of the systemic to pulmonary artery shunt and the size of the atrial communication were also depicted in each patient and these findings corresponded with angiographic results. The results suggest that NMR imaging is effective for assessing the results of initial palliative surgery for hypoplastic left heart syndrome, which seems to be important for managing patients before subsequent definitive surgery.
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