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Ann Thorac Surg. 2005 Oct;80(4):1290-6; discussion 1296.

Descending thoracic aortic aneurysm repair: 12-year experience using distal aortic perfusion and cerebrospinal fluid drainage.

Author information

1
Department of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery, The University of Texas Houston Medical School, Memorial Hermann Hospital, Houston, Texas, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The benefit of distal aortic perfusion and cerebrospinal fluid drainage over the "clamp and sew" technique during repairs of the descending thoracic aorta is still being debated. The purpose of this report is to analyze our experience with regard to neurologic deficit (paraplegia and paraparesis) and mortality using the adjuncts of distal aortic perfusion and cerebrospinal fluid drainage.

METHODS:

Between February 1991 and September 2004, we repaired 355 descending thoracic aortic aneurysms. Excluded from analysis were 29 patients who required profound hypothermic circulatory arrest as a result of transverse arch involvement and 26 patients with aortic rupture, leaving a group of 300 patients for which outcomes were analyzed. Mean patient age was 67 years, and 102 (34%) of the patients were women. The adjunct group of distal aortic perfusion and cerebrospinal fluid drainage used in 238 (79.3%) patients was compared with a group of 62 patients who underwent simple cross-clamp with or without the addition of a single adjunct. Multivariable data were analyzed by Cox regression.

RESULTS:

The incidence of neurologic deficit after all repairs was 2.3% (7 of 300 patients). The incidence of neurologic deficit (immediate and delayed) in the adjunct group was 1.3% (3 of 238 patients), and in the nonadjunct group was 6.5% (4 of 62 patients; p < 0.02). One case of delayed paraplegia occurred in each group. All neurologic deficits occurred in patients with aneurysmal involvement of the entire descending thoracic aorta (extent C; p < 0.02). Statistically significant predictors for neurologic deficit were the use of the adjunct (odds ratio [OR], 0.19; p = 0.02), previous repaired abdominal aortic aneurysm (OR, 7.0; p = 0.005), type C aneurysm (OR, 13.73; p = 0.02), and cerebrovascular disease history (OR, 4.7; p < 0.03). Thirty-day mortality was 8% (24 of 300 patients). Significant multivariate predictors of 30-day mortality were preoperative renal dysfunction (OR, 4.6; p < 0.01) and female sex (OR, 2.9; p < 0.03).

CONCLUSIONS:

Repairs of the descending thoracic aorta using the adjunct of distal aortic perfusion and cerebrospinal fluid drainage can be performed with a low incidence of neurologic deficit and an acceptable mortality. The use of the adjuncts should be considered during elective repairs of the descending thoracic aorta.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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