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A Journal on Cardiac, Vascular and Thoracic Surgery

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The Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery 2008 June;49(3):393-7

language: English

Aortic tube grafts wrapping with hemostatic fleeces reduces postoperative pericardial effusions

Onorati F., Pasceri E., Scalas C., Santarpino G., Mastroroberto P., Indolfi C., Renzulli A.

1 Cardiac Surgery Unit Magna Graecia University, Catanzaro, Italy
2 Cardiology Unit Magna Graecia University, Catanzaro, Italy


Pericardial effusions often complicate the postoperative course of ascending aortic surgery. We evaluated whether an unconventional use of hemostatic fleeces (TachoSil®, Nycomed; Austria), wrapped around aortic tube grafts, may reduce such complication. Twenty-nine consecutive patients undergoing button-Bentall were submitted - according to surgeon’s choice - to 360° wrapping of the aortic grafts with hemostatic fleeces immediately before sternal wiring (11 patients - group A) or sternal wiring without any wrapping of the prosthesis (18 patients - group B). Hospital outcome was recorded. No differences were recorded in hospital mortality and major organ morbidity. When pericardial complications were considered, group A showed lower chest drains (P=0.0001), time of chest drainage (P=0.002), pretamponade/tamponade with need for pericardiocentesis (P=0.039), predischarge echocardiographic amount of pericardial effusion (P=0.026), fever (P=0.029), need for anti-inflammatory (P=0.05) or antibiotic drugs (P=0.007), hospital stay (P=0.010) and white blood cell count (P=0.016 on postoperative day 3; P=0.014 on day 6). Wrapping of aortic tube grafts with hemostatic fleeces is effective in reducing pericardial effusion and its deleterious effects following aortic surgery.

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