Management strategies for true and dissecting visceral artery aneurysms

Paula R Keschenau, Nikitas Kaisaris, Houman Jalaie, Jochen Grommes, Drosos Kotelis, Johannes Kalder, Michael J Jacobs*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


BACKGROUND: Visceral artery aneurysms (VAA) are rare and the literature regarding management strategies is limited. The study aim was to evaluate our 13-year experience with VAA treatment including conservative, open surgical and endovascular therapy.

METHODS: This retrospective single-center study included 37 patients (31 male, median age 70 years [46-79 years]) with true and dissecting VAA treated between January 2006 and December 2018. Indications for invasive therapy were ruptured (n=1) and symptomatic (n=8) VAA or asymptomatic VAA >20 mm (n=15). The decision on the treatment type was made after interdisciplinary (vascular surgeons/radiologists) discussion.

RESULTS: The aneurysms affected the celiac trunk (n=18, 49%), the splenic artery (n=11, 30%), the superior mesenteric artery (SMA, n=6, 16%), the hepatic artery (n=5, 14%) and proximal SMA side branches (n=2, 5%). Six patients had multiple VAA, one had an intrahepatic artery aneurysm and one had peripheral mesocolic artery aneurysms plus a VAA. 46% of the patients (n=17) had coexisting aneurysms in other vascular territories. Thirteen patients were managed conservatively (median VAA diameter 15 [14-25] mm), 18 underwent open surgery with venous or prosthetic bypass or interposition graft implantation and 6 were treated by endovascular means (coiling (n=3) or endograft (n=3)). Median follow-up (FU) was 21 months (4-123 months). In-hospital mortality was 0%. Median length of hospital stay was 11 days (5-28 days) after surgical and 3 days (2-71 days) after endovascular treatment. Complications included an early type I endoleak, 3 secondary open abdominal surgeries for bleeding/peritonitis after endovascular treatment of a ruptured intrahepatic aneurysm, anasymptomatic aorto-truncal bypass occlusion and aneurysm recurrence after a venous SMA interposition graft. None of the conservatively treated VAA required invasive treatment during FU.

CONCLUSIONS: Small (<20mm) asymptomatic VAA can be managed conservatively. Whenever invasive treatment is indicated, both open and endovascular treatments can be performed with low complication rates. In order to choose the optimal therapeutic approach, anatomical features and patient comorbidities should be considered and, ideally, discussed interdisciplinarily.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)340-346
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number3
Early online date4 Oct 2019
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020


  • Mesenteric arteries
  • Aneurysm
  • Peripheral vascular diseases
  • Vascular grafting
  • Endovascular procedures

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