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J Vasc Surg. 2012 Sep;56(3):614-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jvs.2012.01.081. Epub 2012 May 8.

Endovascular repair of ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm does not confer survival benefits over open repair.

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Division of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pa 15213, USA.



Endovascular repair of ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm (rAAA) is being increasingly performed despite lack of good evidence for its superiority. Other reported studies suffer from patient selection and publication bias with limited follow-up. This study is a single-center propensity score comparing early and midterm outcomes between open surgical repair (OSR) and endovascular repair of rAAA (REVAR).


A retrospective review from January 2001 to November 2010 identified 312 patients who underwent rAAA repairs. Thirty-one patients with antecedent AAA repair and three with incomplete records were excluded, leaving 37 REVARs and 241 OSRs. Propensity score-based matching for sex, age, preoperative hemodynamic status, surgeon's annual AAA volume, and preoperative cardiopulmonary resuscitation was performed in a 1:3 ratio to compare outcomes. Thirty-seven REVARs were matched with 111 OSRs. Late survival was estimated by Kaplan-Meier methods.


Operative time and blood replacement were higher with OSR. Overall complication rates were similar (54% REVAR vs 66% OSR; P = .23), except for higher incidences of tracheostomies (21% vs 3%; P = .015), myocardial infarction (38% vs 18%; P = .036), and acute tubular necrosis (47% vs 21%; P = .009) with OSR. Operative mortality rates were similar (22% REVAR vs 32% OSR), with an odds ratio of 0.63 for REVAR (95% confidence interval = [0.24, 1.48]; P = .40). No differences in the incidences for secondary interventions for aneurysm- or graft-related complications were noted (22% REVAR vs 22% OSR; P = .99). Kaplan-Meier estimates of 1-, 2-, and 3-year survival rates were also similar (50%, 50%, 42% REVAR vs 54%, 52%, 47% OSR; P = .66).


REVAR for rAAA does not seem to conclusively confer either acute or late survival advantages. Routine use of REVAR should be deferred until prospective, randomized trial data become available.

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