Expandable external support device to improve Saphenous Vein Graft Patency after CABG.
Ben-Gal Y., Taggart DP., Williams MR., Orion E., Uretzky G., Shofti R., Banai S., Yosef L., Bolotin G.
OBJECTIVES: Low patency rates of saphenous vein grafts remain a major predicament in surgical revascularization. We examined a novel expandable external support device designed to mitigate causative factors for early and late graft failure. METHODS: For this study, fourteen adult sheep underwent cardiac revascularization using two vein grafts for each; one to the LAD and the other to the obtuse marginal artery. One graft was supported with the device while the other served as a control. Target vessel was alternated between consecutive cases. The animals underwent immediate and late angiography and were then sacrificed for histopathologic evaluation. RESULTS: Of the fourteen animals studied, three died peri-operatively (unrelated to device implanted), and ten survived the follow-up period. Among surviving animals, three grafts were thrombosed and one was occluded, all in the control group (p = 0.043). Quantitative angiographic evaluation revealed no difference between groups in immediate level of graft uniformity, with a coefficient-of-variance (CV%) of 7.39 in control versus 5.07 in the supported grafts, p = 0.082. At 12 weeks, there was a significant non-uniformity in the control grafts versus the supported grafts (CV = 22.12 versus 3.01, p < 0.002). In histopathologic evaluation, mean intimal area of the supported grafts was significantly lower than in the control grafts (11.2 mm^2 versus 23.1 mm^2 p < 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: The expandable SVG external support system was found to be efficacious in reducing SVG's non-uniform dilatation and neointimal formation in an animal model early after CABG. This novel technology may have the potential to improve SVG patency rates after surgical myocardial revascularization.