Elephant trunk procedure for surgical treatment of aortic dissection.

Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, National Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Osaka, Japan.
The Annals of Thoracic Surgery (Impact Factor: 3.45). 08/1998; 66(1):82-7. DOI: 10.1016/S0003-4975(98)00349-X
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT In surgical intervention for aortic dissection, a highly radical operation can be performed by distal anastomosis with a true lumen resulting in thrombotic closure of the dissecting lumen. In this anastomosis, the elephant trunk procedure, in which a graft is inserted into the distal true lumen, prevents blood flow leakage into the dissecting lumen at the anastomosis site and also strengthens this area.
We performed this procedure in 15 patients (8 men and 7 women). Acute aortic dissection was observed in 9 patients and chronic dissection in 6. Stanford type A dissection was diagnosed in 10 patients and type B in 5.
Graft replacement of the ascending aorta and total aortic arch was performed in 10 patients and descending aortic replacement in 5. A graft with a diameter of 16 to 24 mm was inserted into the true lumen of the descending aorta, and the false lumen was closed. Subsequently, distal anastomosis was performed on the true lumen. There were two hospital deaths. Postoperative digital subtraction angiography showed good results in living patients, and computed tomographic scanning showed thrombotic closure in the dissecting lumen of the descending aorta.
The elephant trunk procedure is useful for closing the false lumen of the distal aorta.

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    ABSTRACT: Objective: We reviewed the surgical management of acute type A aortic dissection between 1989 and 1998.Methods: Subjects were 28 consecutive patients (mean age: 61.8±10.7 years) with acute type A aortic dissection were studied. The mean duration between aortic dissection onset and surgery was 17.5±17.0 hours. In surgery, aortic pathology and flow patterns in dissected aortic channels were evaluated using transesophageal and epiaortic echo. Simple, safe combination of profound hypothermic circulatory arrest with retrograde cerebral perfusion and open aortic anastomosis was used for brain protection. Hypothermic circulatory arrest was 46.9±24.8 minutes. Aortic repair consisted in ascending aortic replacement in 5 patients, with hemiarch repair in 17, and total arch repair in 6. Intimal tears were resected in all but 2 patients. Concomitantly resuspension of the aortic valve was done in 9 and aortic root replacement in 2.Results: No operative (30-day) deaths occurred, although 2 died from unrelated hepatic failure during hospitalization or late-stage pancreatic cancer in the late stage. In cerebral sequellae, 1 patient suffered a stroke and 2 patients developed temporary neurologic dysfunction.Conclusion: Our experience demonstrated that the simplified conjunction of hypothermic circulatory arrest with retrograde cerebral perfusion and open aortic anastomosis, associated with real-time assessment by transesophageal and epiaortic echo, is safe and useful during emergency aortic repair for acute type A aortic dissection.
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    ABSTRACT: We refined the elephant trunk graft to facilitate and reinforce the distal anastomosis in aortic replacement operations. A cuff is created in a single four-branch graft, which is used for the distal anastomosis; the trunk below the cuff is inserted into the distal aortic stump. This method is feasible for repairing extensive aortic aneurysm with a fragile wall and for treating acute aortic dissection where thromboocclusion of the remaining false lumen is desired.
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    ABSTRACT: Acute type A aortic dissection (AADA) is a surgical emergency. In patients with aortic arch and descending aorta (DeBakey type I) involvement, performing a total aortic arch replacement with frozen elephant trunk (FET) for supposedly better long-term results is controversial. We hereby present our results. From February 2004 to August 2013, 52 patients with acute aortic dissection DeBakey type I received a FET procedure at our centre (43 males, age 59.21 ± 11.67 years). All patients had an intimal tear in the aortic arch and/or proximal descending aorta. Concomitant procedures were Bentall (n = 15) and aortic valve repair (n = 30). Cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB), X-clamp and cardiac arrest times were 262 ± 64, 159 ± 45 and 55 ± 24 min, respectively. The 30-day mortality rate was 13% (n = 7). Stroke and re-thoracotomy for bleeding were 12% (n = 6) and 23% (n = 12), respectively. Postoperative recurrent nerve palsy and spinal cord injury rates were 10% (5 of 52) and 4% (2 of 52), respectively. Follow-up was 40 ± 24 months. During follow-up, no patient died and no patient required a reoperation for the aortic arch. Our results with FET in AADA show acceptable results. Total aortic arch replacement with an FET in AADA patients does demand high technical skills. In spite of this, we believe FET improves long-term outcomes in cases of AADA with intima tear or re-entry in the aortic arch or the descending aorta (DeBakey type I). Modern grafts with four side branches as well as sewing collars for the distal anastomosis have helped to further 'simplify' the FET implantation. However, such a strategy is not appropriate in all AADA cases; it should be implemented only in experienced centres and only if absolutely necessary.
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