Author(s): Wengerter KR, Veith FJ, Gupta SK, Ascer E, Rivers SP
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Abstract We reviewed 239 infrapopliteal reversed greater saphenous vein graft bypasses placed for critical ischemia over a 7-year period to determine the influence of vein diameter on graft patency and limb salvage. Grafts were assigned to four groups based on the minimum external diameter measured during operation: less than 3.0 mm, n = 18; 3.0 mm, n = 59; 3.5 mm, n = 67; and greater than or equal to 4.0 mm, n = 145. A pattern of increasing graft patency and limb salvage among the four groups was noted as the minimum external diameter increased from less than 3.0 mm to greater than or equal to 4.0 mm. When compared to the larger grafts greater than or equal to 4.0 mm, primary graft patency was significantly lower both for less than 3.0 mm grafts (0\% for less than 3.0 mm vs 65\% for greater than or equal to 4.0 mm at 3 years, p less than 0.001) and for long (greater than 45 cm) 3.0 mm grafts (38\% for long 3.0 mm vs 75\% for greater than or equal to 4.0 mm at 2 years, p less than 0.005). All 3.5 mm and short (less than 45 cm) 3.0 mm grafts had patency rates similar to greater than or equal to 4.0 mm veins. Thus long 3.0 mm and all less than 3.0 mm reversed saphenous vein grafts should be considered at high risk for failure. Veins with fibrotic, thick-walled segments identified during operation (n = 19) had patency rates significantly lower than nonfibrotic veins (n = 270; p less than 0.01), and this may play a role in the failure of some less than 3.0 mm minimum external diameter vein grafts.
This article was published in J Vasc Surg
and referenced in Journal of Antivirals & Antiretrovirals