The ideal candidate is between 10 and 45 years of age with isolated aortic stenosis or regurgitation and normal left ventricular function. Younger children are also appropriate in many cases and patients up to 65 can be considered if their life expectancy is at least 25 years.
The presence of other cardiac problems or a decreased functional capacity of the left ventricle does not eliminate the option of the Ross Procedure, but can increase the risk of the operation. In general, the younger the patient, the more willing one should be to expand the indications for the procedure.
From a practical standpoint, nearly a third of Dr. Stelzer’s patients have had other procedures done at the same time as the Ross. The ascending aorta has been replaced in 23, trimmed down to size in 44, and “tucked” in 10. The mitral valve has been repaired for regurgitation in 26 and stenosis in 6. Coronary bypass grafts have been added in 29 patients. Various other minor procedures such as closing an atrial septal defect have also been done. Each patient deserves to be considered individually.