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The Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery 2022 August;63(4):434-8

DOI: 10.23736/S0021-9509.22.12385-2


language: English

Aortic remodeling in aortic dissection after frozen elephant trunk: overcoming the challenges

Fatima KAYALI 1, Matti JUBOURI 2, Sven Z. TAN 3, Idhrees MOHAMMED 4, Mohamad BASHIR 5

1 School of Medicine, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, UK; 2 Hull York Medical School, University of York, York, UK; 3 Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, London, UK; 4 Institute of Cardiac and Aortic Disorders (ICAD), SRM Institutes for Medical Science (SIMS Hospital), Chennai, India; 5 Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Velindre University NHS Trust, Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW), Cardiff, UK

The introduction of the single-step hybrid frozen elephant trunk (FET) procedure expanded the surgeon’s armamentarium in managing aortic dissection (AD). This is evident by the reduction in mortality and complication rates associated with conventional techniques used to repair ADs. Although FET still carries a risk of certain complications, it has been associated with excellent aortic remodeling following the procedure. The main scope of this review is to evaluate aortic remodeling in aortic dissection after FET as well as to highlight the challenges that may arise and ways to overcome them. A comprehensive literature search was conducted on multiple electronic databases including PubMed, Ovid, Scopus and Embase to highlight the evidence in the literature on aortic remodeling in aortic dissection after FET. The FET procedure promotes excellent long-term remodeling, this is seen in the substantial increase in the size of the true lumen along with the decrease in that of the false lumen (FL), in addition to significant FL thrombosis. However, this occurs to a lesser extent more distally at the level of the abdominal aorta. Negative remodeling may present a major challenge to the process of aortic remodeling, nevertheless, this can be overcome with endovascular reintervention which has demonstrated highly favorable results. Additionally, the choice of FET graft, in terms of type and length, seems to influence outcomes. Namely, the Thoraflex™ Hybrid graft can be considered the superior graft on the global market. On the other hand, there seems to be a debate in the literature on the optimal FET graft length. The FET procedure has revolutionized the field of aortovascular surgery and promotes excellent long-term aortic remodeling. Negative remodeling can occur but can also be favorably overcome with endovascular reintervention. Finally, the choice of FET graft may also influence results, thus, should be taken with great care.

KEY WORDS: Aortic aneurysm; Dissecting aneurysm; Vascular remodeling; Blood vessel prosthesis

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