Arterialization of the venous system in a rat lower limb model

Br J Plast Surg. 1997 Sep;50(6):402-7. doi: 10.1016/s0007-1226(97)90326-x.


Creation of alternative vascular conduits has been one of the most challenging subjects in the history of vascular surgery. In the past, afferent arteriovenous fistulas have been used by vascular surgeons to rescue ischaemic extremities. We have undertaken a comprehensive investigation to characterize arterialization of the venous system at different levels of the rat lower limb. In Group 1 (n = 28), we performed an end-to-end anastomosis between the proximal saphenous artery and the distal saphenous vein (Superficial venous system), and ligated all other branches of the femoral artery. In Group 2 (n = 28), we performed an end-to-end anastomosis between the proximal saphenous artery and the distal femoral vein (Deep venous system). In Group 3 (n = 24), the control group, the femoral artery was ligated proximal to its trifurcation into the saphenous, epigastric, and distal femoral vessels. Group 4 (n = 10), the normal group, underwent no surgery. Animals were sacrificed at the first, third, and eighth postoperative weeks. Arteriographic, India ink injection, latex injection, and histological studies were performed on all groups. Successful arterialization of veins, significant neovascularization, and less ischaemic injury of muscles were noted in the arterialized vein groups (Groups 1 and 2) when compared with the ligated group (Group 3). This model appears to depict successfully arterialization of the lower limb venous system in a small animal model.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Angiography
  • Animals
  • Arteriovenous Shunt, Surgical*
  • Carbon*
  • Coloring Agents
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Femoral Vein / surgery
  • Hindlimb / blood supply*
  • Ischemia / pathology
  • Ischemia / surgery*
  • Latex
  • Muscle, Skeletal / blood supply
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology
  • Rats
  • Saphenous Vein / surgery


  • Coloring Agents
  • Latex
  • chinese ink
  • Carbon