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Semin Intervent Radiol. 2015 Sep;32(3):289-303. doi: 10.1055/s-0035-1558825.

Advanced Endovascular Approaches in the Management of Challenging Proximal Aortic Neck Anatomy: Traditional Endografts and the Snorkel Technique.

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Division of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


Advances in endovascular technology, and access to this technology, have significantly changed the field of vascular surgery. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the treatment of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs), in which endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR) has replaced the traditional open surgical approach in patients with suitable anatomy. However, approximately one-third of patients presenting with AAAs are deemed ineligible for standard EVAR because of anatomic constraints, the majority of which involve the proximal aneurysmal neck. To overcome these challenges, a bevy of endovascular approaches have been developed to either enhance stent graft fixation at the proximal neck or extend the proximal landing zone to allow adequate apposition to the aortic wall and thus aneurysm exclusion. This article is composed of two sections that together address new endovascular approaches for treating aortic aneurysms with difficult proximal neck anatomy. The first section will explore advancements in the traditional EVAR approach for hostile neck anatomy that maximize the use of the native proximal landing zone; the second section will discuss a technique that was developed to extend the native proximal landing zone and maintain perfusion to vital aortic branches using common, off-the-shelf components: the snorkel technique. While the techniques presented differ in terms of approach, the available clinical data, albeit limited, support the notion that they may both have roles in the treatment algorithm for patients with challenging proximal neck anatomy.


chimney technique; endoleak; endovascular aneurysm repair; interventional radiology; juxtarenal and pararenal aortic aneurysms; snorkel technique

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