Migration of a Bifurcated Endovascular Graft into an Iliac Aneurysm: Endovascular Salvage and Future Prevention: A Case Report

Murray L. Shames, Luis A. Sanchez, Brian G. Rubin, Gregorio A. Sicard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


The FDA approval of endovascular grafts for the treatment of abdominal aortic aneurysms has been associated with a dramatic increase in the use of these devices. Major referral centers are reporting the treatment of 75% to 80% of their patients with infrarenal abdominal aortic aneurysms with endovascular devices. The large quantity of endovascular devices being used has produced a growing number of management issues that are often not predictable during the preoperative assessment. These issues require complex intraoperative decision making and innovative techniques for their management as reflected by the subsequent case report. An 82-year-old patient presented with a 7.8-cm abdominal aortic aneurysm. The aneurysm extended into the common iliac arteries bilaterally. The right common iliac artery was 6.5 cm and the left common iliac artery was 2.0 cm in maximal diameter. The preoperative work-up, including a computed tomography scan and arteriogram, suggested that he would be a potential candidate for endovascular repair. The plan was to extend the graft into the right external iliac artery after embolization of the right hypogastric artery and to seal the left limb in the ectatic left common iliac artery using an aortic extender cuff. During the endovascular repair of the aortoiliac aneurysms using the AneuRx bifurcated graft, the main device became dislodged from its infrarenal attachment site and migrated into the large right common iliac artery aneurysm with the iliac limb ending in the distal external iliac artery. A new bifurcated device was deployed from the left side to attempt an endovascular salvage of the difficult situation. The new graft was partially deployed down to the iliac limb. This allowed cannulation of the contralateral stump through the original endovascular graft that had migrated distally. The two grafts were connected with a long iliac limb. This allowed stabilization of the endovascular reconstruction by increasing its columnar strength. The deployment of the second bifurcated graft was completed and the central core with the runners removed safely without migration of the second bifurcated component. The reconstruction was completed with an aortic cuff in the left common iliac artery. The use of the aortic cuff was useful to preserve the left hypogastric artery. No intraoperative endoleak was noted. The patient did well and was discharged the day following the procedure. The follow-up computed tomography scan shows the abdominal aortic aneurysm excluded by the endovascular graft with a defunctionalized portion of one bifurcated graft within the right common iliac aneurysm. There is no evidence of endoleak and the abdominal aortic aneurysm had decreased in size at 6 months. This case demonstrates one of the unique management problems that may arise during endovascular graft placement. Events that initially would suggest failure of the endoluminal treatment may be corrected using advanced endovascular techniques by an experienced surgeon. However, there will be times that the prudent decision will be conversion to open repair. Only good clinical judgement and adequate training will prevent catastrophic outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-82
Number of pages6
JournalVascular and Endovascular Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2002
Externally publishedYes

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