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The Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery 2015 August;56(4):503-11


language: English

Value and limitations of chimney grafts to treat arch lesions

Mangialardi N. 1, Ronchey S. 1, Malaj A. 2, Fazzini S. 1, Alberti V. 1, Ardita V. 1, Orrico M. 1, Lachat M. 3

1 Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, San Filippo Neri Hospital, Rome, Italy; 2 Department of Vascular Surgery, Policlinico Umberto I, Rome, Italy; 3 Clinic for Cardiovascular Surgery, University Hospital Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland


AIM: The endovascular debranching with chimney stents provides a minimally invasive alternative to open surgery with readily available devices and has extended the option of endoluminal therapy into the realm of the aortic arch. But a critical observation at the use of this technique at the aortic arch is important and necessary because of the lack of long-term results and long term patency of the stents. Our study aims to review the results of chimney grafts to treat arch lesions.
METHODS: A systematic health database search was performed in December 2014 according to the Prisma Guidelines. Papers were sought through a meticulous search of the MEDLINE database (National Library of Medicine, Bethesda, MA) using the Pubmed search engine.
RESULTS: Twenty-two articles were eligible for detailed analysis and data extraction. A total of 182 patients underwent chimney techniques during TEVAR (Thoracic Endovascular Aneurysm Repair). A total of 217 chimney grafts were implanted: 36 to the IA, 1 to the RCCA, 91 to the LCCA and 89 to the LSA. The type of stent-graft used for TEVAR was described in 132 patients. The type and name of chimney graft was described in 126 patients. In 53 patients information was limited to the type. Primary technical success, defined as a complete chimney procedure was achieved in 171 patients (98%). In 8 patients it was not clearly reported. The overall stroke rate was 5.3%. The overall endoleak rate, in those papers were it was clearly reported, was 18.4% (31 patients); 23(13,6%) patients developed a type IA endoleak, 1 patient (0.6%) developed type IB endoleak and 7 patients (4.1%) developed a type II endoleak
CONCLUSION: The total endovascular aortic arch debranching technique represent a good option to treat high-risk patients, because it dramatically reduces the aggressiveness of the procedure in the arch. Many concerns are still present, mainly related to durability and material interaction during time. Long-term follow-up is exceptionally important in light of the interactions of the stents, the thoracic endograft, the aortic arch, and every variation in systolic and diastolic pressure. Actually this technique has acceptable short and mid-term results. Long term data are available just from a very small number of patients and more data from a wider number are needed in order to embrace this method as a safe one.

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