|Authors||Matsumura JS, Chaikof EL|
|Journal||J. Vasc. Surg. Volume: 28 Issue: 3 Pages: 422-30; discussion 430-1|
|Publish Date||1998 Sep|
Longitudinal studies have revealed that the aortic segment proximal to an infrarenal abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is at risk for continued enlargement after a standard aneurysm repair. Similarly, preliminary reports have shown expansion of one or both aortic necks after endovascular repair. Although some investigators have suggested that this may be a transient effect, continued dilatation at the endograft attachment site could effect the overall device stability.As part of a multi-institutional trial of endovascular grafting for the treatment of AAA, 59 patients were successfully implanted with straight endografts between February 1993 and January 1995. A morphometric analysis of aortic neck size was undertaken with serial review of computed tomography scans available through April 1997. The neck sizes at both graft attachment sites were measured, with investigators blinded to patient identity and date of scan. Changes in minor diameter were defined, annual interval expansion rates were calculated, and the data were correlated with endoleak, device migration, aneurysm size change, endograft diameter, attachment system fractures, and initial preimplant neck size.Significant aortic neck enlargement, particularly at the level of the distal neck, was observed for at least 24 months after AAA repair. The annual interval dilation rates of the proximal aortic neck were 0.7 +/- 2.1 mm/year (P = .023) and 0.9 +/- 1.9 (P = .008) mm/year during the first and second years, respectively. Enlargement of the distal neck during the observation period was more marked, with corresponding annual expansion rates of 1.7 +/- 2.9 mm/year (P < .001) and 1.9 +/- 2.5 (P < .001) mm/year. In 5 patients (14%), the minor diameter of the distal neck was at least 6 mm larger than the preimplant diameter of the graft. Migration of the distal attachment system was observed in 3 of these 5 patients. Expansion rates did not have a statistically significant correlation with initial neck size, endograft dimensions, aneurysm size change, presence of endoleak, or attachment system fracture.Aortic neck enlargement was observed for at least 2 years after endovascular grafting. Close patient follow-up remains mandatory in lieu of the potential risk of late failure as a result of continued aortic expansion. The relative contribution of device design to this phenomenon will need to be defined.