Multiple aortic aneurysms: The results of surgical management

Peter Gloviczki, Peter Pairolero, Timothy Welch, Kenneth Cherry, John Hallett, Barbara Toomey, James Naessens, Thomas Orszulak, Hartzell Schaff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


During the past 2 decades 102 consecutive patients (77 men and 25 women) with multiple aortic aneurysms underwent 201 aortic reconstructions. These procedures (174 elective and 27 emergent) represented 3.4% of the 5837 aortic aneurysm operations performed. Seventy-five (30.9%) of the 243 aneurysms occurred in the infrarenal aorta, 65 occurred in the descending aorta (26.7%), 56 occurred in the thoracoabdominal aorta (23.0%), and 47 occurred in the ascending aorta or arch (19.3%). Ages ranged from 20 to 81 years (mean 63.3 years). Smoking history and abnormal electrocardiographic tracings were present in 84.3% of the patients, hypertension was present in 77.5%, and obstructive lung disease was present in 60.8%. Multiple aortic aneurysms were present at the time of the first repair in 55 patients (53.9%). Twelve patients had one procedure, 81 had two, and nine had three. Sixteen (17.8%) of the 90 patients who had multiple operations had a subsequent operation for complications of the unrepaired aneurysm (rupture 12, symptoms 4). Fourteen perioperative deaths occurred among the 174 elective repairs (8.0%), and 11 occurred among the 27 emergent procedures (40.7%). Procedure mortality increased with the ordinal number of elective operations and was 4.4% for the first, 10.4% for the second, and 33.3% for the third. Seven of 21 patients (33.3%) who had simultaneous repair of at least two aortic aneurysms died in the perioperative period. Overall, 77 of the 102 patients (75.5%) survived all surgical procedures to repair their multiple aortic aneurysms; of these, 63 had complete resection of all known aneurysms. Follow-up was complete in all patients and averaged 6.3 years (ranges: 1 month to 19 years). There were 30 late deaths; the most frequent cause was myocardial infarction. Kaplan-Meier 5-year survival including perioperative deaths for all patients after the first operation was 76% and after the last operation 40%. We conclude that multiple aortic aneurysms can be safely managed, usually with staged repairs, and that long-term survival is probable. After the first aortic operation the presence of multiple aneurysms mandates close observation with timely surgical intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)19-28
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of vascular surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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