Benign superior vena cava syndrome: stenting is now the first line of treatment

Journal of Vascular Surgery
Adnan Z RizviPeter Gloviczki


Endovascular repair (EVR) is emerging as first-line treatment for patients with superior vena cava (SVC) syndrome of benign etiology, but data on its durability remain scarce. The aims of this study were to assess the efficacy and durability of EVR and compare results of EVR with open surgical reconstruction (OSR). Data from 70 consecutive patients undergoing treatment for benign SVC syndrome between November 1983 and November 2006 were retrospectively reviewed. There were 30 males and 40 females (mean age, 41 years; range, 5-75 years). Etiology included indwelling catheters or pacemaker wires in 35 patients, mediastinal fibrosis in 31, idiopathic thrombosis in 2, hypercoagulable disorder in 1, and postsurgical thrombosis in 1. In 42 patients, OSR was done through a median sternotomy: repair was with spiral saphenous vein in 22, expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) in 13, femoral vein grafts in 6, and human allograft in 1. Fifteen OSRs followed failed EVR interventions. EVR was attempted in 32 patients and was successful in 28 (88%): 19 had stenting, 14 had percutaneous transluminal balloon angioplasty (PTA), 2 had thrombolytic therapy with PTA, and 3 had stenting. All four technical failures subsequently underwent OSR. The...Continue Reading


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