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THE JOURNAL OF CARDIOVASCULAR SURGERY

A Journal on Cardiac, Vascular and Thoracic Surgery


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The Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery 2001 December;42(6):749-51

Copyright © 2009 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Clinical studies of bioabsorbable poly-L-lactide sternal coaptation pins

Tanaka T., Okawa Y., Ishida N., Toyama M., Hashimoto M., Matsumoto K.

From the Division of Cardiovascular Surgery National Toyohashi Higashi Hospital, Aichi, Japan


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Background. Median sternotomy has become the most commonly used incision in cardiac surgery. Since sternal dehiscence, however, is a major complication, we used bioabsorbable poly-L-lactide (P-L-LA) sternal coaptation pins for sternal closure to prevent it.
Methods. From February 1998 to October 1999, 99 patients (64 men, 35 women; mean age, 63±1.2 years) underwent median sternotomy for cardiac surgery using sternal coaptation pins. Nineteen patients had diabetes mellitus and seven had renal failure. In closure, two sternal pins were inserted into the bone marrow of the sternum, one into the manubrium, the other into the body, and the sternum was sutured with five stainless steel wires.
Results. Five patients died in the hospital. The causes of death were cardiac failure in two patients, respiratory problem in two and perforation of the stomach in one. The average length of hospitalization was 2 4.5±2.5 days. Sternal dehiscence occurred in one patient and mediastinitis in four. There was no bleeding from the bone marrow and no complication related to the use of the sternal pins.
Conclusions. P-L-LA sternal pins were easy to insert and may be effective in preventing dehiscence of the sternum.

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