Surgery for Acute Lower Limb Ischemia in the Elderly Population: Results of a Comparative Study

Operative Unit of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, San Bortolo Hospital, Vicenza, Italy.
Annals of Vascular Surgery (Impact Factor: 1.17). 05/2011; 25(7):947-53. DOI: 10.1016/j.avsg.2010.12.036
Source: PubMed


To evaluate the outcome of surgical treatment of acute lower limb ischemia in elderly patients. The primary endpoints were early and midterm rates of survival and limb salvage.
A retrospective analysis involving 76 consecutive patients observed for acute lower limb ischemia between March 2005 and December 2008 who underwent revascularization was conducted. A total of 44 patients (group A) of age >80 years (average age: 86.9 ± 4.5 years; 13 men and 31 women) had a site of obstruction at the level of abdominal aorta in one case (2.3%), common-external iliac artery/common femoral artery in 15 (34.1%), superficial femoral artery/popliteal artery in 26 (59.1%), and infrapopliteal arteries in two (4.5%), and embolectomy, thrombectomy, bypass, and angioplasty was performed in 24 (54.5%), 11 (25.0%), eight (18.2%), and one (2.3%) case(s), respectively. A total of 32 patients (group B) of age <80 years (average age: 67.2 ± 12.2 years; 19 men and 13 women) with an analogous site of obstruction at the level of abdominal aorta in one case (3.1%), common/external iliac artery/common femoral artery in 12 (37.5%), superficial femoral artery/popliteal artery in three (9.4%), and infrapopliteal arteries in 16 (50.0%) underwent the same aforementioned procedures in 10 (31.3%), 12 (37.5%), nine (28.1%), and one (3.1%) case(s), respectively.
At 30 days after surgery, survival and limb salvage were both 93.2% in group A versus 96.9% and 87.5%, respectively, in group B, whereas they were 93.2% and 65.8%, respectively, in group A versus 85.7% and 96.9%, respectively, in group B (p = 0.22 and p = 0.19, respectively) at the midterm control. The univariate and multivariate analyses showed that category 2b of acute ischemia (immediately-threatening) has a negative statistically significant influence on the survival rate (p = 0.01).
Limb salvage rates after surgical intervention for acute lower limb ischemia in the elderly population are comparable with those of the younger population, whereas survival rates are lower, but without statistical significance. The only factor that negatively influences the survival rate is the 2b clinical category of acute ischemia, regardless of the age of the patient.

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