Purpose: Splenic abscesses represent a major complication following splenic artery embolization. The purpose of this study was to assess the effectiveness of intra-arterial antibiotics administered during splenic artery embolization in reducing splenic abscess formation.
Materials and methods: 406 patients were screened. 313 (77.1%) patients who underwent splenic artery embolization and were >18 years old were included. Mean age of the cohort was 58 ± 15 years (range: 18-88 years). There were 205 (65.5%) male patients and 108 (34.5%) female patients. 197 (62.9%) patients underwent embolization without intra-arterial antibiotics and 116 (37.1%) patients underwent embolization with 1 g ampicillin and 80 mg gentamicin administered in an intra-arterial fashion. Primary outcome was splenic abscess formation. Secondary outcomes included type of splenic artery embolization, embolic agent, and technical success.
Results: Partial splenic embolization was performed in 229 (73.1%) patients. Total splenic embolization was performed in 84 (26.8%) patients. Platinum coils were the most commonly used embolic agent overall (n = 178; 56.9%) followed by particulates (n = 114; 36.4%). Embolization technical success was achieved in 312 (99.7%) patients. 7 (3.6%) splenic abscesses were detected in the non-intra-arterial antibiotic group and 1 (0.9%) in the intra-arterial antibiotic cohort (P = 0.27). Coils were found to be statistically more likely to result in splenic abscesses than any other embolic agent (P = 0.03). Mean time to abscess identification was 74 days ±120 days (range: 9-1353 days).
Conclusion: Splenic abscesses occurred more frequently in patients who did not receive intra-arterial antibiotics during splenic embolization; however, this did not reach statistical significance.
Keywords: Ampicillin; Gentamicin; Intra-arterial antibiotics; Splenic abscess formation; Splenic artery embolization.
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