Double-barrel technique for preservation of aortic arch branches during thoracic endovascular aortic repair

Z K Baldwin, T A M Chuter, J S Hiramoto, L M Reilly, D B Schneider
Annals of Vascular Surgery 2008, 22 (6): 703-9
Thoracic endovascular aortic repair (TEVAR) may involve either planned or inadvertent coverage of aortic branch vessels when stent grafts are implanted into the aortic arch. Vital branch vessels may be preserved by surgical debranching techniques or by placement of additional stents to maintain vessel patency. We report our experience with a double-barrel stent technique used to maintain aortic arch branch vessel patency during TEVAR. Seven patients underwent TEVAR using the double-barrel technique, with placement of branch stents into the innominate (n = 3), left common carotid (n = 3), and left subclavian (n = 1) arteries alongside an aortic stent graft. Gore TAG endografts were used in all cases, and either self-expanding stents (n = 6) or balloon-expandable (n = 1) stents were utilized to maintain patency of the arch branch vessels. In three cases the double-barrel stent technique was used to restore patency of an inadvertently covered left common carotid artery. Four planned cases involved endograft deployment proximally into the ascending aorta with placement of an innominate artery stent (n = 3) and coverage of the left subclavian artery with placement of a subclavian artery stent (n = 1). TEVAR using a double-barrel stent was technically successful with maintenance of branch vessel patency and absence of type I endoleak in all seven cases. One case of zone 0 endograft placement with an innominate stent was complicated by a left hemispheric stroke that was attributed to a technical problem with the carotid-carotid bypass. On follow-up of 2-18 months, all double-barrel branch stents and aortic endografts remained patent without endoleak, migration, or loss of device integrity. The double-barrel stent technique maintains aortic branch patency and provides additional stent-graft fixation length during TEVAR to treat aneurysms involving the aortic arch. Moreover, the technique uses commercially available devices and permits complete aortic arch coverage (zone 0) without a sternotomy. Although initial outcomes are encouraging, long-term durability remains unknown.

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