Carotid-axillary bypass as an alternative revascularization method for zone II thoracic endovascular aortic repair

Oana Bartos, Migdat Mustafi, Mateja Andic, Gerd Grözinger, Christoph Artzner, Christian Schlensak, Mario Lescan
Journal of Vascular Surgery 2020 February 5

BACKGROUND: We investigated the mid-term results of carotid-axillary bypass (CAB) in the setting of zone II thoracic endovascular aortic repair as an alternative method for the left subclavian artery (LSA) revascularization.

METHODS: Our retrospective single cohort study included all 69 patients from March 2015 to December 2018 with zone II thoracic endovascular aortic repair and CAB for the revascularization of the LSA. Demographics and clinical data were collected. We assessed several clinical outcomes: local complications (hematoma, injury of the brachial plexus, vagus and sympathetic chain nerve palsies, chyle leakage), subclavian steal, arm ischemia, paraplegia, mortality, and stroke. Follow-up computed tomography scans were analyzed for CAB and vertebral artery (VA) patency and the extent of thrombus formation in the LSA.

RESULTS: The in-hospital mortality was 3% and the perioperative stroke rate was 4%. Permanent paraplegia occurred in 3%. Perioperative morbidity included irritation of the brachial plexus (1%), sympathetic chain nerve palsy (1%), and wound hematoma in 3% of the cases. Phrenic and vagus nerve lesions and chyle leakage were not observed. Bypass patency was 97% at mean follow-up of 333 ± 39 days. VA occlusion was found in 6% of all cases. Strokes did not occur during the follow-up. Morbidity at follow-up included arm claudication (3%) in two patients with bypass thrombosis. Subclavian steal was observed in 3%. The LSA ostium was ligated (44%), plugged (22%), or left open (35%) in patients without a type II endoleak. Subgroup analysis of LSA thrombosis to the level of the VA was more prevalent after surgical ligature (P = .02), but had no negative effects on CAB or VA patency or stroke.

CONCLUSIONS: CAB is a safe alternative to classic debranching procedures, with distinctive advantages regarding local complication rates described in the literature.

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