Purpose: To compare postintervention patency rates after deployment of bare metal versus covered stents across the venous anastomosis of prosthetic arteriovenous (AV) grafts.
Methods: Review of our procedural database over a 6 year period revealed 377 procedures involving stent deployment in an AV access circuit. After applying strict inclusion criteria, our study group consisted of 61 stent deployments in 58 patients (median age 58 years, 25 men, 33 women) across the venous anastomosis of an upper extremity AV graft circuit that had never been previously stented. Both patent and thrombosed AV access circuits were retrospectively analyzed. Within the bare metal stent group, 20 of 32 AV grafts were thrombosed at initial presentation compared to 18 of 29 AV grafts in the covered stent group.
Results: Thirty-two bare metal stents and 29 covered stents were deployed across the venous anastomosis. The 3, 6, and 12 months primary access patency rates for bare metal stents were not significantly different than for covered stents: 50, 41, and 22 % compared to 59, 52, and 29 %, respectively (p = 0.21). The secondary patency rates were also not significantly different: 78, 78, and 68 % for bare metal stents compared to 76, 69, and 61 % for covered stents, respectively (p = 0.85). However, covered stents demonstrated a higher primary stent patency rate than bare metal stents: 100, 85, and 70 % compared to 75, 67, and 49 % at 3, 6, and 12 months (p < 0.01).
Conclusion: The primary and secondary access patency rates after deployment of bare metal versus covered stents at the venous anastomosis were not significantly different. However, bare metal stents developed in-stent stenoses significantly sooner.