Complex aortofemoral prosthetic infections: The role of autogenous superficial femoropopliteal vein reconstruction

Lori L. Gordon, Ryan T. Hagino, Mark R. Jackson, J. Gregory Modrall, R. James Valentine, G. Patrick Clagett

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45 Scopus citations


Background: With increasing experience, we have encountered patients with complex aortofemoral prosthetic infections in whom extra-anatomic bypass (EAB) is not an option. Hypothesis: Autogenous superficial femoropopliteal vein (SFPV) aortic reconstruction provides a limb-saving and lifesaving alternative with acceptable morbidity and mortality. Design: Retrospective review. Setting: University-based county, private, and Veterans Affairs hospitals. Patients: Seventeen patients with infected aortofemoral bypasses in whom conventional EAB was impossible because of infection of previously placed EAB, massive groin and/or thigh sepsis, or both. Main Outcome Measures: Morbidity and mortality. Results: Multiple previous operations were common (mean, 4 per patient) and included EAB (n = 11), replacement aortofemoral bypass (n = 4), prosthetic femoropopliteal bypass (n = 7), and thoracobifemoral bypass (n = 1); all bypasses became infected. Overall, 11 patients had sepsis at the time of presentation. Of the patients with massive groin infection, 7 had extensive deep infections involving most of the proximal thighs or retroperitoneum, 4 had enterocutaneous fistulae, and 2 had necrotizing fasciitis of the lower abdomen and thigh. Polymicrobial infections were common (n = 9). Four patients (24%) died in the perioperative period, 8 (47%) suffered major complications, and 4 (24%) underwent major amputations. Mortality in this group of patients was 3 times that of all other patients undergoing autogenous SFPV aortic reconstruction for prosthetic infection (8%). Amputation rates were also increased (24% vs 6%). The mean ± SD follow-up time is 23 ± 21 months. All patients maintained patent SFPV reconstructions. Conclusions: In the setting of complex aortofemoral prosthetic infections, autogenous SFPV aortic reconstruction is a useful option for patients in whom EAB is impossible and limb loss and/or death would be inevitable without revascularization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)615-621
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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