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  • Author or Editor: Bon H. Verweij x
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Jochem P. Bremmer, Bon H. Verweij, Catharina J. M. Klijn, Albert van der Zwan, L. Jaap Kappelle and Cornelis A. F. Tulleken

Object

Excimer laser–assisted nonocclusive anastomosis (ELANA) is a technique that can be used for extracranial-to-intracranial (EC-IC) bypasses, without the necessity of temporary occlusion of the donor or recipient artery. Information on predictors of patency of EC-IC bypasses in general and the ELANA bypass in particular is sparse. The authors studied 159 ELANA EC-IC bypasses to find predictors of patency.

Methods

From a prospective database of patients who underwent EC-IC bypass surgery, 143 consecutive patients who underwent a total of 159 ELANA bypasses were studied. The associations of patient characteristics, surgical aspects, and technical aspects specific to the ELANA technique with intraoperative and postoperative bypass patency were studied using logistic regression analysis.

Results

At the end of the operation, 146 (92%) of the 159 bypasses were patent. A first attempt to create a bypass was almost 8 times more likely (OR 7.6, 95% CI 2.1–27.5; p = 0.02) to result in a patent bypass than a second attempt. Administration of a small amount of heparin during the operation was also associated with bypass patency (OR 5.2, 95% CI 1.1–24.9; p = 0.04). One hundred twenty-three (77%) of the 159 bypasses were functional at patency assessments during the 1st month after the operation. Older age (OR 1.043 for every year of increase in age, 95% CI 1.010–1.076; p = 0.01), male sex (OR 2.9, 95% CI 1.3–6.5; p = 0.01), and high intraoperative bypass flow (OR 1.017 for every milliliter per minute increase in flow, 95% CI 1.004–1.030; p = 0.01) were associated with postoperative bypass patency.

Conclusions

Attempts to create a second EC-IC ELANA bypass after the first one are more likely to fail, whereas administration of heparin to the patient during the procedure increases the intraoperative bypass patency rate. Postoperative patency results are better in male and in older patients. Intraoperative bypass flow measurements are essential because high bypass flow is an important determinant of postoperative patency.

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Jochem P. Bremmer, Bon H. Verweij, Albert van der Zwan, Michael M. Reinert, Hendricus J. Mansvelt Beck and Cornelis A. F. Tulleken

Object

Cerebral aneurysms that cannot be treated by clip or coil placement can be treated with high-flow bypass surgery using techniques such as the excimer laser–assisted nonocclusive anastomosis (ELANA). To simplify the technique, a sutureless ELANA (SELANA) was developed in combination with an expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) graft.

Methods

In 18 rabbits a bypass was constructed on the abdominal aorta using the SELANA technique with an ePTFE graft, resulting in 18 bypasses and 36 anastomoses. Short-term effects were analyzed in the first 2 weeks and at 2 and 3 months after the procedure. Patency was evaluated using quantitative ultrasound flowmetry. The anastomotic sites were studied using scanning electron microscopy.

Results

Construction of the bypass using the SELANA technique was easier and faster (15–25 minutes) compared with bypasses made with the ELANA technique (> 90 minutes). At the end of follow-up, 16 of 18 bypasses were patent. Of 36 SELANA anastomoses, 32 could be completed without short temporary occlusion of the recipient vessel. Scanning electron microscopy showed complete coverage of all anastomoses with neointimal repair tissue after 10 days.

Conclusions

The SELANA technique provides further advantages over the conventional ELANA technique in ease of use and shortening of procedure time. The patency rate in this series was 89% and neointima repair tissue at the anastomosis site was complete after 10 days. Further experimental studies of the long-term patency and safety of this technique are necessary before clinical application.

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Tristan P. C. van Doormaal, Albert van der Zwan, Saskia Redegeld, Bon H. Verweij, Cornelis A. F. Tulleken and Luca Regli

Object

The purpose of this study was to assess flow, patency, and endothelialization of bypasses created with the sutureless Excimer Laser Assisted Non-occlusive Anastomosis (SELANA) technique in a pig model.

Methods

In 38 pigs, a bypass was made on the left common carotid artery (CCA), using the right CCA as a graft, with 2 SELANAs. Bypass flow was measured using single-vessel flowmetry. The pigs were randomly assigned to 1 of 12 survival groups (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 10 days; 2 and 3 weeks; and 3 and 6 months). One extra animal underwent the procedure and then was killed after 1 hour of bypass patency to serve as a control. Angiography was performed just before the animals were killed, to assess bypass patency. Scanning electron microscopy and histological studies were used to evaluate the anastomoses after planned death.

Results

The mean SELANA bypass flow was not significantly different from the mean flow in the earlier ELANA (Excimer Laser Assisted Non-occlusive Anastomosis) pig study at opening and follow-up. Overall SELANA bypass patency (87%) was not significantly different from the ELANA patency of 86% in the earlier study. Complete SELANA endothelialization was observed after 2–3 weeks, compared with 2 weeks in the earlier ELANA study.

Conclusions

The SELANA technique is not inferior to the current ELANA technique regarding flow, patency, and endothelialization. A pilot study in patients is a logical next step.

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Michael Reinert, Bon H. Verweij, Thomas Schaffner, George Mihalache, Gerhard Schroth, Rolf W. Seiler and Cornelis A. F. Tulleken

Object

Patients with complex craniocerebral pathophysiologies such as giant cerebral aneurysms, skull base tumors, and/or carotid artery occlusive disease are candidates for a revascularization procedure to augment or preserve cerebral blood flow. However, the brain is susceptible to ischemia, and therefore the excimer laser–assisted nonocclusive anastomosis (ELANA) technique has been developed to overcome temporary occlusion. Harvesting autologous vessels of reasonable quality, which is necessary for this technique, may at times be problematic or impossible due to the underlying systemic vascular disease. The use of artificial vessels is therefore an alternative graft for revascularization. Note, however, that it is unknown to what degree these grafts are subject to occlusion using the ELANA anastomosis technique. Therefore, the authors studied the ELANA technique in combination with an expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) graft.

Methods

The experimental surgeries involved bypassing the abdominal aorta in the rabbit. Ten rabbits were subjected to operations representing 20 ePTFE graft–ELANA end-to-side anastomoses. Intraoperative blood flow, follow-up angiograms, and long-term histological characteristics were assessed 75, 125, and 180 days postoperatively. Angiography results proved long-term patency of ePTFE grafts in all animals at all time points studied. Data from the histological analysis showed minimal intimal reaction at the anastomosis site up to 180 days postoperatively. Endothelialization of the ePTFE graft was progressive over time.

Conclusions

The ELANA technique in combination with the ePTFE graft seems to have favorable attributes for end-to-side anastomoses and may be suitable for bypass procedures.