Results of endovascular aortic aneurysm repair with general, regional, and local/monitored anesthesia care in the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database

J Vasc Surg. 2011 Nov;54(5):1273-82. doi: 10.1016/j.jvs.2011.04.054. Epub 2011 Jul 1.


Background: This study examined outcomes of endovascular repair of infrarenal abdominal aortic aneurysms (EVAR) using general, spinal, epidural, and local/monitored anesthesia care (MAC) in a multicenter North American hospital database reflecting contemporary anesthesia and surgical practices.

Methods: Elective EVAR cases performed between 2005 and 2008 were identified from the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database using Current Procedural Terminology codes. Excluded were emergency cases and patients with concomitant procedures requiring general anesthesia. Patient-level comorbidities, characteristics, and intraoperative and postoperative details were examined. Complications were analyzed individually and in aggregate categories, including wound, pulmonary, renal, venous thromboembolic, cardiovascular, operative, and septic. Length of stay (LOS) and 30-day mortality were examined. Characteristics and outcomes were described using mean ± standard deviation or count (%), and comparisons were evaluated for statistical significance using χ(2), Fisher exact test, and univariate linear regression. LOS was analyzed with linear regression techniques using a log transformation. Associations between anesthesia type and outcomes were examined using univariable and multivariable regression techniques.

Results: We identified 6009 elective EVAR procedures for analysis. General anesthesia was used in 4868 cases, spinal anesthesia in 419, epidural anesthesia in 331, and local/MAC in 391. Defined morbidity occurred in 11% of patients. Median LOS was 2 (interquartile range, 1-3) days, and mean LOS was 2.8 ± 4.3 days. The 30-day mortality rate was 1.1%. Significant multivariate associations were observed between anesthesia type, pulmonary morbidity, and log-LOS. General anesthesia was associated with an increase in pulmonary morbidity vs spinal (odds ratio [OR], 4.0; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.3-12.5; P = .020) and local/MAC anesthesia (OR, 2.6; 95% CI, 1.0-6.4; P = .041). Use of general anesthesia was associated with a 10% increase in LOS for general vs spinal anesthesia (95% CI, 4.8%-15.5%; P = .001) and a 20% increase for general vs local/MAC anesthesia (95% CI, 14.1%-26.2%; P < .001). Trends toward increased pulmonary morbidity and LOS were not observed for general vs epidural anesthesia. No significant association between anesthesia type and mortality was observed.

Conclusions: In contemporary North American anesthetic and surgical practice, general anesthesia for EVAR was associated with increased postoperative LOS and pulmonary morbidity compared with spinal and local/MAC anesthesia. These data suggest that increasing the use of less-invasive anesthetic techniques may limit postoperative complications and decrease the overall costs of EVAR.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anesthesia, Conduction* / adverse effects
  • Anesthesia, Conduction* / mortality
  • Anesthesia, General* / adverse effects
  • Anesthesia, General* / mortality
  • Anesthesia, Local* / adverse effects
  • Anesthesia, Local* / mortality
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Abdominal / mortality
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Abdominal / surgery*
  • Blood Vessel Prosthesis Implantation* / adverse effects
  • Blood Vessel Prosthesis Implantation* / mortality
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Databases as Topic
  • Endovascular Procedures* / adverse effects
  • Endovascular Procedures* / mortality
  • Female
  • Hospital Mortality
  • Humans
  • Length of Stay
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Monitoring, Intraoperative*
  • North America
  • Odds Ratio
  • Patient Selection
  • Postoperative Complications / etiology
  • Postoperative Complications / mortality
  • Quality Improvement
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Societies, Medical
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome