Objective: We studied the effectiveness of Wallstent deployment to treat elastic femoral and iliac vein stenoses in patients with lower extremity hemodialysis grafts.
Materials and methods: Between August 31, 1992, and October 13, 1997, 44 metallic stents were deployed in 20 patients to treat stenoses exhibiting immediate, significant elastic recoil after angioplasty. Twenty-four stents were placed in the femoral and saphenous veins, and the remaining 20 stents were placed in the iliac veins. Follow-up was provided by the nephrology and surgical service at our institution and by electronic review of patients' charts. The follow-up period was from August 31, 1992, until October 1, 1998.
Results: Stents were successfully inserted and stenotic lesions dilated in 100% of procedures. Each patient successfully completed at least one session of dialysis after the procedure. The primary patency rate of stents was 87% 60 days after the procedure, 51% 180 days after, 39% 1 year after, and 20% 2 years after. The secondary patency rate was 95% 60 days after the procedure, 92% 180 days after, 81% 1 year after, and 62% 2 years after. Complications were limited to two graft infections that developed 5 and 7 days after stent placement.
Conclusion: Treatment of elastic venous stenoses is effective in patients with lower extremity dialysis grafts using metallic stents. The patency rates of these devices placed in the iliac and femoral veins are comparable with those of metallic stents placed in upper extremity and central veins.