David Shemesh, Ilya Goldin, Oded Olsha
2009 Journal of Vascular Surgery  
We read with interest the timely review by Peterson and Matsumura. 1 Hostile iliofemoral access is a leading constraint to the general ability of achieving endovascular repair of thoracic and aortic aneurysms. We would like to draw attention to another strategy for overcoming this common clinical dilemma that was not discussed by the authors: utilization of the common carotid artery. Our institution 2 is among other institutions that have described use of the common carotid artery for thoracic
more » ... ortic aneurysm endovascular repair and coverage of penetrating thoracic aorta ulcers. 3-5 More recently, we have used this access route for abdominal aortic aneurysm repair using a custom made, reversemounted endograft. 6 To accommodate a 28F thoracic endograft, the common carotid artery should be 8 mm in luminal diameter and free of disease. Accordingly, carotid ultrasound assessment is essential to measure vessel diameter and atherosclerotic burden. This assessment may be augmented by computed tomography imaging of the intracranial and extracranial carotid system to visualize vessel caliber and the anastomoses at the circle of Willis. Although carotid shunting to preserve cerebral perfusion is not possible with this approach, intraoperative transcranial Doppler measurement of the middle cerebral artery provides an indication of the patient's tolerance to carotid manipulation. A further procedural modification to avoid brain hypoxia is construction of a temporary extracorporeal axillocarotid graft to maintain cerebral perfusion in the presence of coexisting carotid disease or retrograde vertebral artery flow. 7 A technical hazard to note from this procedure is "cheese-wiring" of the guidewire through the aortic wall at the angle of carotid intersection with the aortic arch. This may been avoided by ensuring that a long sheath is situated within aorta at all times. We believe that in appropriately selected patients, the common carotid arteries provide a practical alternative route for endovascular access for both thoracic and abdominal aortic endovascular interventions. Jonathan Ghosh, MD, MA, FRCS Ferdinand Serracino-Inglott, MD, MSc, FRCS Manchester Royal Infirmary Manchester, United Kingdom REFERENCES 1. Peterson BG, Matsumura JS. Tips and tricks for avoiding access problems when using large sheath endografts. J Vasc Surg 2009;49:524-7. 2. Murray D, Ghosh J, Khwaja N, Murphy M, Baguneid M, Walker MG. Staged open and endovascular repair of thoracoabdominal aneurysms using the common carotid artery. Ann Vasc Surg 2005;19:103-7. 3. May J, White GH, Waugh R, Stephen M, Harris JP. Common carotid artery access for endoluminal aortic aneurysm repair. J Endovasc Ther 2000;7(suppl 1):1-24. 4. Estes JM, Halin N, Kwoun M, et al. The carotid artery as alternative access for endoluminal aortic aneurysm repair. J Vasc Surg 2001;33: 650-3. 5. Heidenreich MJ, Neschis DG, Costanza MJ, Flinn WR. Endovascular repair of a penetrating thoracic aortic ulcer by way of the carotid artery. J reported significantly better primary patency rates for covered stents compared to bare stents in early recurring stenoses of the final arch of the cephalic vein. Although the authors acknowledge in the Discussion that these "stents can cause occlusion of the axillary/subclavian vein" so "that the arm is no longer available for (a new) arteriovenous access construction", we disagree when they say that this is a rare phenomenon. From our previous experience with stents in this location, even stents not clearly protruding into the axillary/subclavian vein can cause stenosis or occlusion, which then precludes any further creation of a new ipsilateral vascular access. There are, to date, no criteria to help predict this severe complication. We have previously emphasized the drawbacks of axillary-subclavian stents in a published letter. 2 We believe that the conclusion of Dr Shemesh's article promoting placement of covered stents in cephalic arches should be toned down, since such stent placements should be prohibited in patients with a reasonably long life expectancy. The preservation of venous capital in such patients is more important than any slight prolongation of patency of the brachial-cephalic fistula, which eventually requires redilation despite covered stent placement. Unfortunately, it is difficult to predict the likely survival of the majority of dialysis patients and, thus, the need for precaution should lead to questioning the majority of potential indications for stent placement in cephalic arches. Angioplasty with stent graft versus bare stent for recurrent cephalic arch stenosis in autogenous arteriovenous access for hemodialysis: a prospective randomized clinical trial. J Vasc Surg 2008;48:1524-31. 2. Turmel-Rodrigues L, Bourquelot P, Raynaud A, Sapoval M. Primary stent placement in hemodialysis-related central venous stenoses: the dangers of a potential "radiologic dictatorship".
doi:10.1016/j.jvs.2009.04.002 fatcat:qz4npo6lkbbznluoxsk2lnik3m