Infrarenal aortic occlusion: a reassessment of surgical indications

American Journal of Surgery
J L McCulloughA D Callow


Citing a high incidence of proximal propagation of aortic thrombosis, several authors have advocated aortic reconstruction for all patients with infrarenal aortic occlusion irrespective of their preoperative symptoms and potential operative risks. To test this thesis, the records and follow-up data of 38 patients seen at our institution between 1965 and 1982 with infrarenal aortic occlusion were analyzed. Twenty-four of the 38 patients were treated surgically (Group I); 16 (42 percent) had an aortobifemoral graft and 8 (21 percent) had an axillofemoral bypass graft. When the 14 patients who did not have surgery (Group II) and the 8 patients who had an axillofemoral graft were combined, 22 patients (58 percent) did not have aortic reconstruction (Group III), thus the aortic thrombus was left in situ. There was no significant difference in cumulative survival between the three groups at 4 year follow-up. Of 13 patients in Group III who were followed for more than 6 months (mean 48 months), none died from proximal propagation of aortic thrombosis. The decision for surgical intervention in patients with distal aortic occlusion should be arrived at, as in other patients with aortoiliac occlusive disease, by weighing preoperative sym...Continue Reading


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