Endovascular versus open repair for blunt thoracic aortic injury: short-term results

John Kokotsakis, Ioannis Kaskarelis, Panagiotis Misthos, Thanos Athanasiou, Konstantinos Kanakakis, Chariklia Athanasiou, Constantina Romana, Elian Skouteli, Achilles Lioulias
Annals of Thoracic Surgery 2007, 84 (6): 1965-70

BACKGROUND: Endovascular stent grafting has been increasingly used as an alternative treatment modality. The aim of this study is to evaluate the immediate and short-term results of endovascular stent grafting repair after blunt thoracic aortic injury due to trauma.

METHODS: A review of a tertiary trauma center registry identified all patients who suffered blunt thoracic aortic injury from 2002 to 2006. All patients underwent either open repair with synthetic graft interposition or endovascular stent grafting (EVS) of the descending thoracic aorta. Type and severity of injury, concomitant injuries, clinical factors, and outcome were compared between groups. Univariate and multivariate analysis was performed.

RESULTS: Endovascular stent grafting was performed in 22 patients, and 10 patients underwent open surgical repair. In the open group, the 30-day mortality rate was 10%, the paraplegia rate was 10%, and incidence of major complications was 30%, which were comparable with the incidences observed in the EVS group of 4.5%, 4.5%, and 13.6%, respectively. No statistically significant differences were demonstrated. Multivariate regression analysis identified associated thoracic injury as the main independent predictor of hospital length of stay (p = 0.03, 95% confidence interval: 0.53 to 18.85). In the EVS group, 1 patient died in the short-term follow-up period and 2 cases of endovascular leak required additional treatment.

CONCLUSIONS: Although postoperative mortality and morbidity between open and endovascular repair were comparable, EVS can be considered a safe alternative treatment modality in the therapeutic algorithm of blunt thoracic aortic injury particularly for the higher risk multitrauma patients.

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