During the past decade, endovascular stent graft repair (EVSG) of abdominal aortic aneurysms has emerged as a less invasive and less morbid alternative to open surgical repair. We hypothesize that EVSG may become the treatment method of choice among patients older than 80 years.
Retrospective case series.
Major academic medical center with extensive experience in endovascular and open aortic aneurysm surgery.
Patients and Methods
During a 5-year period, EVSG was performed in 595 patients at our institution. One hundred fifty (25.2%) of these patients were older than 80 years. Our prospectively acquired database was reviewed with respect to the demographic, intraoperative, and outcome data of this elderly population.
Main Outcome Measures
Technical and clinical success, aneurysm-related events (aneurysm-related death, type I or type III endoleaks, aneurysm expansion, or aneurysm rupture), and secondary interventions.
There were 119 men (79.3%) and 31 women (20.7%) (mean age, 84.6 years). Mean aneurysm diameter was 6.7 cm. Comorbidities including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, coronary artery disease, chronic renal insufficiency, peripheral vascular disease, hypertension, and hypercholesterolemia were common in these patients, with an average of 2.9 comorbid conditions per patient. Mean follow-up was 16.9 months (range, 1.0-61.4 months). One hundred forty-six patients (97.3%) received only regional anesthesia, and the average intraoperative blood loss was 369 mL. Average hospital and intensive care unit stays were 2.5 days and 0.1 day, respectively. The procedure was performed emergently in 3 patients, and each recovered uneventfully. There were 5 aborted procedures (3.3%) for technical reasons and 4 conversions to open aortic repair (2.6%). In addition to these aborted procedures, there were 2 additional technical failures resulting in a technical success rate of 95.3%. Endoleaks were common and included 9 type I (6.90%), 35 type II (24.10%), and 1 type III (0.69%). The majority either resolved spontaneously (type IIs) or with minimally invasive secondary intervention, which was performed in 13 patients. Perioperative local/vascular and systemic complications occurred in 16 (10.7%) and 8 (5.3%) patients, respectively. There were 5 perioperative deaths (3.3%)(<30 days postoperatively). Forty late deaths (26.7%)(>30 days postoperatively) occurred, which were unrelated to the EVSG procedure.
Endovascular repair of abdominal aortic aneurysms can be performed safely and successfully in the majority of octogenarians with relatively low complication rates. Improved EVSG devices and operator experience may make this procedure the treatment method of choice for patients in this age group who meet specific anatomical criteria.