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Microvascular anastomosis of interpositional vein grafts with the UNILINK system. A comparative experimental study.

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  • 1Department of Plastic Surgery, Hand Surgery and Burns, University Hospital, Linköping, Sweden.


Vein segments from the posterior facial vein of the rabbit were surgically isolated and re-anastomosed, either by manual suture technique or by the use of a new mechanical anastomotic device, the UNILINK apparatus. The purpose of the study was to compare anastomotic patency and time required for an orthotopic vein grafting procedure, when the two techniques were used. In the grafts anastomosed with the UNILINK technique, both clinical and histological evaluation showed 100% patency, while 20% of the sutured grafts showed impaired flow as a result of occlusive thrombosis. When the mechanical device was used, the full procedure was completed within one third of the time, as compared to suture anastomoses.

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