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AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2005 Aug;185(2):472-80.

TIPS with expanded polytetrafluoroethylene-covered stent: results of an Italian multicenter study.

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Division of Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, Department of Oncology, Transplants, and Advanced Technologies in Medicine, University of Pisa, Via Roma 67, Pisa 56127, Italy.



Our objective is to describe the results of a multicenter prospective trial on the safety and efficacy of transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunts (TIPS) using the Viatorr stent-graft.


From 2001 to 2003, 114 patients (75 men and 39 women; mean age, 59.3 years) with portal hypertension underwent TIPS with the Viatorr stent-graft. Indications for treatment were variceal bleeding (n = 49, 43.0%), refractory ascites (n = 52, 45.6%), hypertensive gastropathy (n = 10, 8.8%), Budd-Chiari syndrome (n = 1, 0.9%), and hepatorenal syndrome (n = 2, 1.7%). Eight patients (7.0%) had Child-Pugh class A cirrhosis; 60 (52.6%), Child-Pugh class B; and 46 (40.4%), Child-Pugh class C. Patients were monitored by color Doppler sonography and phlebography.


The procedure was successful in 113 (99.1%) of 114 patients; in one patient, creation of the track was not feasible. The mean portosystemic pressure gradient decreased from 21.8 to 8.7 mm Hg. Three minor immediate complications (2.6%) occurred (two cases of self-limiting hemoperitoneum and one extrahepatic portal puncture requiring covered stenting). At a mean follow-up of 11.9 months, the overall mortality rate was 31.0% (35/113), with a 30-day mortality rate of 8.8% (10/113). Mortality was significantly higher in patients in Child-Pugh class C with refractory ascites and with post-procedural encephalopathy. Cumulative primary patency rates were 91.9%, 79.9%, and 75.9% at 6, 12, and 24 months' follow-up, respectively. Restenosis occurred in 15 patients (13.3%) within the stent (n = 8, 53.3%) or at the ends of the portal (n = 1, 6.7%) or hepatic (n = 6, 40%) veins and was solved by percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (n = 11), stenting (n = 3), or parallel TIPS (n = 1). The secondary patency rate was 98.2%. Post-procedural encephalopathy occurred in 27 patients (23.9%).


The Viatorr stent-graft is safe and effective in TIPS creation, with high primary patency rates. Covering the entire track up to the inferior vena cava can increase patency.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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