Femoral artery pseudoaneurysms in intravenous drug users: a 12-year series

I Kotsikoris, T T Papas, N Papanas, I Tzor-Batzoglou, D Maras, N Bessias, P Pavlidis, V Andricopoulos, S Kotsiou, E Maltezos
International Angiology: a Journal of the International Union of Angiology 2012, 31 (5): 433-7

AIM: Management of pseudoaneurysms in intravenous drug users poses many questions regarding need for revascularization and type of surgery. The aim of this study was to report on the frequency and management of femoral artery pseudoaneurysms in our department during the last twelve years.

METHODS: Retrospective report on patients hospitalized in the Department of Vascular Surgery in Red Cross Hospital, Athens, Greece between January 1999 and May 2010 with femoral artery pseudoaneurysms due to intravenous drug abuse.

RESULTS: Overall, 23 patients (18 men, 5 women, mean age 36 years) were identified. Of these, 20 patients underwent revascularization, while femoral artery ligation had to be performed in 3. Intraoperative evaluation of leg perfusion was decisive in choice of treatment. No patient presented with critical limb ischemia postoperatively. No amputations or complications were noted during the follow-up.

CONCLUSION: Treatment of common femoral artery pseudoaneurysms in drug abusers should be tailored to individual requirements. Bypass surgery is not always required, due to the pre-existing collateral network in many cases.

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