Background. Reattachment of segmental arteries is one method used to prevent paraplegia associated with thoracoabdominal aortic repair. Nevertheless, even when important segmental arteries are reattached, ischemia causing spinal injury may occur during anastomosis. Methods. In 27 patients undergoing thoracoabdominal aortic repair, we attempted to perfuse the segmental arteries to be reattached with catheters connected to the distal bypass circuit. To identify perioperative risk factors for spinal ischemia, we examined changes in spinal somatosensory evoked potentials. Results. A median value of four segmental arteries were perfused in 20 (74%) of the 27 patients. Changes in somatosensory evoked potential indicative of spinal ischemia were observed in 13 patients (48%). The only risk factor associated with changes in evoked potentials revealed by a multivariate analysis was prolonged aortic cross-clamp time (> 120 minutes). Of the 2 patients who suffered paraplegia, one had the longest clamp time and the other showed spinal cord necrosis due to embolic shower. Conclusions. Despite selective perfusion of segmental arteries, spinal ischemia associated with aortic cross-clamping may occur when clamping is prolonged over 120 minutes. Most of the changes appear to be reversible, however. (C) 2000 by The Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine