Background: Surgical repair of thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysms remains a technically challenging operation that requires a multimodality approach to preventing ischemic complications. The purpose of this report is to update our experience and highlight our current clinical strategies.
Methods: Between January 1, 1986 and December 31, 2001, 1,773 patients underwent thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm repair. The majority of these patients (1,153, 65%) required Crawford extent I or II repairs. Segmental intercostal or lumbar arteries were reattached in 1,082 patients (61%); left heart bypass was used in 686 patients (38.7%), and 173 patients (9.8%) had cerebrospinal fluid drainage.
Results: The 30-day survival rate was 94.3% (1,672 patients). Postoperative complications included renal failure requiring hemodialysis in 105 patients (5.9%) and paraplegia or paraparesis in 79 patients (4.5%). Actuarial 5-year survival was 73.5% +/- 1.6%.
Conclusions: This clinical experience demonstrates that current technical strategies enable patients to undergo thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm repair with excellent early survival and acceptable morbidity.