• Thoracoabdominal aneurysm repair was carried out in 55 patients during the period from January 1978 to June 1988. Considering the volume of experience and application of a routine for preoperative and intraoperative management, the experience was divided as follows: group 1 1978 to 1985 (26 patients) and group 2 1985 to 1988 (29 patients). Clinical features of the two groups differed only in the incidence of emergency operations (group 1 [6/18, 30%] vs group 2 [2/29, 8%]). Operative mortality in elective operations improved substantially in recent experience (group 1 [50%] vs group 2 [7.4%]). Significant reductions in total operative time, operative blood loss, and total aortic cross-clamping times paralleled and, in part, explained the improvement in overall surgical results seen in group 2 patients. Spinal cord injury occurred in 7.2% of the entire cohort. Nonfatal but major complications occurred in 25% of group 2 patients, with the most common being prolonged ventilatory assistance (12%). Current results with thoracoabdominal aneurysm repair both establish its safety and help to provide guidelines in selecting patients for elective repair.
(Arch Surg. 1989;124:620-624)