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Am J Cardiol. 1984 Mar 1;53(6):833-7.

The femoral venous approach to endomyocardial biopsy: comparison with internal jugular and transarterial approaches.


Endomyocardial biopsy is often used in the clinical evaluation of cardiac disease. Among 134 consecutive procedures (280 myocardial samples), 3 approaches were compared: right internal jugular (n = 69), femoral arterial (n = 30) and femoral venous (n = 35). The femoral venous approach is a new method with which a preformed guiding sheath is used to allow sampling of the apical right ventricular portion of the ventricular septum. Vascular access and myocardial sampling were successful in all femoral venous and left ventricular (LV) procedures; however, the internal jugular vein could not be located to allow biopsy in 12% of neck approaches (p less than 0.025). One case of pneumothorax occurred after an internal jugular approach. Chest pain occurred after 10% (3 patients) of the LV, 4% (3 patients) of internal jugular and 3% (1 patient) of femoral venous procedures. Hypotension associated with biopsy was noted after 3 internal jugular and 2 LV procedures. Pericardial effusion was observed in 3 patients after an LV procedure (p less than 0.01). In 1 of these patients tamponade developed. The femoral venous approach had the highest overall efficiency (successful biopsy, lack of adverse events, p less than 0.05). This approach may become the procedure of choice for routine endomyocardial biopsy because it allows reliable vascular access and myocardial sampling with a low incidence of adverse reactions.

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