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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 2004 April;45(2):123-24

language: English

A variation of the radial artery and its clinical implications for coronary artery bypass grafting

Schachner T., Höfer D., Laufer G., Bonatti J.

Department of Cardiac Surgery Innsbruck University Hospital, Innsbruck, Austria


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Since the radial artery is increasingly harvested as a bypass graft, surgeons are confronted with its anatomical variations. We report on a radial artery running laterally around the distal part of the radius, while a superficial palmar branch is running straight down. The radial artery can be dissected distally to get enough length for the bypass graft, but attention has to be paid to the superficial branch of the radial nerve running nearby to prevent postoperative paresthesias and numbness. The superficial palmar branch of the radial artery can be ligated. Allen’s test in such a case is not valid because it is always negative.

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