Evaluation of Superficial Femoral Artery Remote Endarterectomy for Treatment of Critical Limb Ischemia in Patients With Limited Autogenous Conduit

Ann Vasc Surg. 2014 Jan;28(1):262.e1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.avsg.2013.01.023. Epub 2013 Sep 29.


Background: Many patients with critical limb ischemia require infrageniculate bypass with a prosthetic graft due to the limited availability of autogenous vein. Prosthetic grafts have been shown to have inferior patency and subject the patient to increased infection rates when compared to bypass with autogenous conduit for lower extremity revascularization. In an effort to avoid the use of prosthetic material, we evaluated the use of remote superficial femoral artery endarterectomy (RSFAE) with distal autogenous revascularization in patients with critical limb ischemia and limited conduit.

Methods: This study is a retrospective review of a prospectively maintained database from January 2009 to September 2011. All patients undergoing RSFAE for critical limb ischemia were identified. Patients undergoing RSFAE with simultaneous distal revascularization constituted the study group. Outcome variables, including patency, time to healing, limb salvage, ambulatory status, and survival, were analyzed.

Results: Twenty-one patients underwent RSFAE at our institution. The study group was comprised of 5 patients undergoing RSFAE and adjunct distal revascularization for critical limb ischemia during the study period. Four patients (80%) presented with tissue loss, and 1 (20%) presented with ischemic rest pain. Three (60%) required simultaneous outflow sequential vein bypass and 2 (40%) required distal endovascular revascularization. The distal target vessels for bypass included the infrageniculate popliteal artery, posterior tibial artery, and peroneal artery. The mean operative time was 5.3 hours. The mean length of hospital stay was 8 days. Technical success was 100%, and there were no early reconstruction failures. There was 1 popliteal wound complication, and no groin wound complications during the study follow-up. At 6 months postoperatively, 4 of 5 reconstructions were patent. Two of 5 patients (40%) required percutaneous reintervention for restenosis at 10 and 11 months, respectively. Primary assisted patency was 80% with a mean follow-up of 12.6 months (range 8-22 months). The 4 patients with tissue loss achieved initial wound healing at a mean time of 4.8 months. The limb salvage rate was 80% and there have been no deaths.

Conclusions: Remote superficial femoral artery endarterectomy with distal revascularization allows for autogenous reconstruction in patients with critical limb ischemia and compromised conduit by shortening bypass length. This procedure constitutes an appealing alternative to the use of synthetic material for lower extremity revascularization. Further study is needed to determine whether the long-term results are superior to distal composite bypass or polytetrafluoroethylene bypass alone.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • California
  • Critical Illness
  • Endarterectomy* / adverse effects
  • Femoral Artery / diagnostic imaging
  • Femoral Artery / physiopathology
  • Femoral Artery / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Ischemia / diagnosis
  • Ischemia / physiopathology
  • Ischemia / surgery*
  • Length of Stay
  • Limb Salvage
  • Lower Extremity / blood supply*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Operative Time
  • Radiography
  • Reconstructive Surgical Procedures* / adverse effects
  • Recovery of Function
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vascular Patency
  • Wound Healing