JOURNAL ARTICLE

Direct percutaneous access technique for transaxillary transcatheter aortic valve implantation: "the Hamburg Sankt Georg approach"

Ulrich Schäfer, Yen Ho, Christian Frerker, Dimitry Schewel, Damian Sanchez-Quintana, Joachim Schofer, Klaudija Bijuklic, Felix Meincke, Thomas Thielsen, Felix Kreidel, Karl-Heinz Kuck
JACC. Cardiovascular Interventions 2012, 5 (5): 477-486
22625184

OBJECTIVES: This study questioned whether transaxillary transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) is feasible as a true percutaneous approach using percutaneous closure devices.

BACKGROUND: Transaxillary TAVI is gaining increasing acceptance as an alternative to the transfemoral route; however, the access has always been done via surgical cutdown so far.

METHODS: Between August 2010 and September 2011, a total of 24 high-risk patients with severe aortic valvular stenosis underwent a percutaneous TAVI procedure by direct puncture of the axillary artery without surgical cutdown. For safety reasons and as a target for the puncture, a wire was advanced via the ipsilateral brachial artery. Moreover, a balloon was placed into the subclavian artery via the femoral artery for temporary vessel blockade before percutaneous vessel closure. Vascular closure was performed using either the ProStar XL system (Abbott Vascular Devices, Redwood City, California) or 2 ProGlide systems (Abbott Vascular Devices).

RESULTS: The true percutaneous approach was successfully completed in all patients (14 left and 8 right axillary artery cases). Overall mortality at 30 days was 8.3%. Acute vascular closure device success was achieved in 17 patients (71%). Vascular closure device success rate was 100% for the ProGlide device and 37% for the ProStar device, respectively. Seven patients (29%) with failing closure devices were treated by endovascular stent graft implantation without the need for surgical repair. For the last 12 treated patients, direct closure was achieved in 11 patients.

CONCLUSIONS: Direct puncture of the axillary artery for TAVI is feasible and safe if a wire is placed into the subclavian artery via the ipsilateral brachial artery.

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