The Influence of 3D Printed Aortic Models on the Evolution of Physician Modified Stent Grafts for the Urgent Treatment of Thoraco-abdominal and Pararenal Aortic Pathologies

Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg. 2021 Mar;61(3):407-412. doi: 10.1016/j.ejvs.2020.10.023. Epub 2020 Nov 30.


Objective: The aim was to describe the outcomes of high risk patients with symptomatic or contained rupture of pararenal (PRAs) and thoraco-abdominal aortic aneurysms (TAAAs) with anatomy unsuitable for commercially available stent grafts who underwent fenestrated endovascular aneurysm repair (FEVAR) using physician modified stent grafts (PMSGs) planned with 3D image analysis software (3DIMAS), and 3D printed aortic models (3DAMs).

Methods: Nineteen consecutive patients (17 male; mean age, 70 ± 9 years) underwent PMSG-FEVAR between 2015 and 2019. 3DAMs to plan the PMSGs were introduced in 2018. End points were all cause mortality, freedom from any endoleak, target vessel patency, and re-intervention.

Results: Seven patients (36.8%) were treated with PMSGs using 3DIMAS (three PRAs, three type IV, and one type III TAAAs), and 12 patients (63.2%) received PMSGs using 3DAMs (five PRAs, seven type IV TAAAs). Six patients presented with contained aortic rupture and 13 patients were treated for symptomatic aortic aneurysm. Mean aortic diameter was 72 ± 10 mm. The choice of stent graft for fenestration was the Valiant Captivia Closed Web (Medtronic), except for one patient. Sixteen (84.2%) stent grafts were manufactured with four fenestrations. Technical success was 100%. Seventy-one renovisceral branch vessels were targeted with fenestrations. Mean length of hospital stay was 17.3 ± 10.4 days. Thirty day mortality was 0%. Two patients developed reversible spinal cord injury. Mean follow up was 14.4 months (range 1-52 months). During follow up one non-aneurysm related death occurred, and two successful re-interventions were performed: one to re-establish renal artery patency, and one to treat a type 1c endoleak.

Conclusion: PMSGs for urgent treatment of pararenal and thoraco-abdominal aortic aneurysms in high risk patients unsuitable for commercially available stent grafts are feasible and safe. 3D printing technology may improve urgent construction of patient specific devices for treatment of complex aortic pathologies and improve outcomes.

Keywords: 3D printing; Fenestrated stent grafts; Juxtarenal aortic aneurysm; Surgeon modified stent graft; Thoraco-abdominal aortic aneurysm.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aneurysm, Ruptured / pathology
  • Aneurysm, Ruptured / surgery*
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Thoracic / pathology
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Thoracic / surgery*
  • Blood Vessel Prosthesis Implantation
  • Blood Vessel Prosthesis*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Printing, Three-Dimensional*
  • Prosthesis Design*
  • Stents*
  • Treatment Outcome