Purpose: The purpose of this study is to compare complication rate, primary patency, and cost of stent deployment with direct surgical reconstruction for the treatment of severe aortoiliac occlusive disease.
Methods: From March 1, 1992, to May 31, 1996, 119 patients receiving treatment for aortoiliac occlusive disease were analyzed after exclusions. Sixty-five patients had stent deployment and 54 patients had surgical reconstruction. Data were evaluated within and between the groups by univariate and multivariate logistic regression, life-table, t-test, and cross tabulation with chi2 analysis.
Results: There was no significant difference between the groups with regard to demographic features or presenting symptoms (all p values > 0.07). Incidence of procedure-related complications was similar (p = 0.30). However, there were more systemic complications in the surgery group (15 versus 2; RR = 5.5, p < 0.01) and more vascular complications in the stent group (16 versus 3; RR = 12, p < 0.002). Incidence and type of late complications were not appreciably different (all p values > 0.05). Cumulative primary patency rate of bypass grafts was significantly better than stented iliac arteries at 18 months (93% versus 77%), 30 months (93% versus 68%) and 42 months (93% versus 68%); p = 0.002, log rank. Multivariate analysis identified female gender (RR = 4.6, p = 0.03), ipsilateral SFA occlusion (RR = 5.6, p = 0.01), procedure-related vascular complication (RR = 9.7, p = 0.002), and hypercholesterolemia (RR = 5.0, p = 0.02) as independent predictors of bypass graft or stent thrombosis. Mean total hospital cost per limb treated did not differ significantly between surgery and stent deployment groups ($9383 versus $8626, respectively; p = 0.66, t-test).
Conclusions: Treatment of severe aortoiliac occlusive disease by surgical reconstruction or stent deployment has a similar complication rate. Mean hospital cost per limb treated is essentially equal. However, cumulative primary patency rate of bypass grafts is superior to stents. Therefore, considering the elements of cost and patency, surgical revascularization has greater value. The benchmark for cost-effective treatment of severe aortoiliac occlusive disease is direct surgical reconstruction.