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Authors Wynn MM, Sebranek J, Marks E, Engelbert T, Acher CW
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Journal J. Cardiothorac. Vasc. Anesth. Volume: 29 Issue: 2 Pages: 342-50
Publish Date 2015 Apr
PubMed ID 25440632

To study complications from spinal fluid drainage in open thoracic/thoracoabdominal and thoracic endovascular aortic aneurysm repairs to define risks of spinal fluid drainage.Retrospective, prospectively maintained, institutionally approved database.Single institution university center.724 patients treated from 1987 to 2013 INTERVENTIONS: The authors drained spinal fluid to a pressure≤6 mmHg during thoracic aortic occlusion/reperfusion in open and ≤8 mmHg after stent deployment in endovascular procedures. Low pressure was maintained until leg strength was documented. If bloody fluid appeared, drainage was stopped. Head computed tomography (CT) and, if indicated, spine CT and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) were performed for bloody spinal fluid or neurologic deficit.Spinal fluid drainage was studied for bloody fluid, CT/MRI-identified intracranial and spinal bleeding, neurologic deficit, and death. Seventy-three patients (10.1%) had bloody fluid; 38 (5.2%) had intracranial blood on CT. One patient had spinal epidural hematoma. Higher volume of fluid drained and higher central venous pressure during proximal clamping were associated with intracranial blood. Most patients with intracranial blood were asymptomatic. Six patients had neurologic deficits: of the 6, 3 died (0.4%), 1 (0.1%) had permanent hemiparesis, and 2 recovered. Three of the six deficits were delayed, associated with heparin anticoagulation.10% of patients had bloody spinal fluid; half of these had intracranial bleeding, which was almost always asymptomatic. In these patients, immediately stopping drainage and correcting coagulopathy may decrease the risk of serious complications. Neurologic deficit from spinal fluid drainage is uncommon (0.8%), but has high morbidity and mortality. Copyright © 2016 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System