Is a type II endoleak after EVAR a harbinger of risk? Causes and outcome of open conversion and aneurysm rupture during follow-up

C J van Marrewijk, G Fransen, R J F Laheij, P L Harris, J Buth
European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery 2004, 27 (2): 128-37

OBJECTIVE: There is still debate whether type II endoleaks represent a risk for the patient after EVAR. Treatment policies vary from fairly conservative to active intervention. In this analysis risk factors for type II endoleak and adverse events during follow-up were assessed. In addition, risk factors and causes for conversion to open repair and for rupture post-EVAR were studied.

METHODS: The data of 3595 patients, who underwent operation between 1996 and 2002 in 114 European institutions that collaborated in the EUROSTAR Registry, were assessed. To accurately assess the influence of type II endoleaks patients with type I, III and combined endoleaks were excluded from the present study cohort.

RESULTS: A combined adverse outcome event consisting of aneurysmal growth, transfemoral reintervention, and transabdominal secondary procedures (including laparoscopic branch vessel clipping) occurred in 55% in patients with type II endoleak at 3 years, compared to 15% in patients without any endoleak (p<0.0001). Conversion to open repair or post-EVAR rupture was not significantly associated with type II endoleaks. An independent association of device migration and expansion of the aneurysm with late conversion was observed. The cumulative incidence of aneurysm rupture at 3 years of follow-up was 1.2% for an annual rate of 0.4%. Variables that significantly and independently correlated with rupture were size of the aneurysm at preoperative measurement and device migration during follow-up.

CONCLUSION: Endoleak type II may not be harmless as it was more frequently associated with enlargement of the aneurysm and reinterventions. Large aneurysms and migration of the device were the main risk factors for rupture. The clinical implications of these findings may involve more frequent surveillance visits for patients with type II endoleak. Aneurysm expansion is a clear indication for reintervention. Patients with large aneurysms, 65 mm or larger, may also benefit from a more comprehensive surveillance schedule.

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