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Peripheral Vascular Surgery

Heart Surgery

When other noninvasive treatment options fail to clear the choked arteries or if multiple vessels are choked in case of diseases like Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) or Peripheral Vascular Disease (PVD), the doctor may choose peripheral vascular surgery as the best treatment option to treat the disease.

Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD):

This is a condition when the arteries are blocked outside the heart. PAD is the most common form of peripheral vascular disease (disease of blood vessels) caused due to plaque buildup on the linings of the blood vessels carrying blood from the heart to other organs outside of the heart (mostly in the blood vessels carrying blood to the legs, arms, kidney and abdomen).

Several factors such as excessive emotional stress, smoking habit, low body temperatures and continuous exposure to vibrating machines can be the cause of peripheral vascular disease. The obstruction of blood vessels can lead to severe ulcers and tissue destruction. If not treated on time, amputation (removing affected body part by surgery) of the organ (foot or leg), will be the only option left to save life.

Peripheral Vascular Disease (PVD)

Peripheral vascular disease is indicated by reduced blood circulation to the heart, brain and legs due to deposition of fatty material on blood vessels carrying blood, which ultimately block the vessels. If the blood vessels in the brain or heart are hardened and blocked, it may lead to stroke or heart attack.

What is the procedure of Peripheral Vascular Surgery?

Peripheral vascular surgery is quite similar to endarterectomy (a procedure to remove plaque), and done when the blockage of arteries is not that severe and can be easily removed.

Peripheral vascular bypass surgeries

Procedure: If the blood vessels are severely blocked, the doctor may choose to perform a bypass procedure.This procedure involves borrowing a healthy blood vessel or its segment from leg and is placed above the affected blood vessel. Artificial blood vessel can also be used as an alternative source of new blood vessel. This newly grafted blood vessel then bypasses the blood around the blocked blood vessel/artery and allows the blood to pass to the heart.

Types of peripheral vascular bypass surgery:

  • Aortic bypass: If the aorta (the main artery from where the blood flows from the heart to the lower limbs through the abdomen) is blocked.
  • Bypass of the Axillary artery: If the artery in the underarm is blocked/affected.
  • Bypass of the Femoral artery: If the artery in the thigh is blocked.
  • Bypass of the Iliac artery: If the artery in the pelvis is blocked.
  • Bypass of the Popliteal artery: If the artery in the knee is affected.
  • Bypass of the Tibial artery: If the arteryto the lower part of the leg is blocked. 

When is the peripheral vascular bypass recommended? 

The peripheral vascular bypass is recommended in the following cases:

  • When other therapies and medications fail to improve the symptoms.
    If angioplasty and stenting are not possible due to any reason.
  • If any sort of infection is detected in the affected area.
  • If you are experiencing severe pain, even in the resting position.
  • If you are experiencing pain, severe enough to disturb your daily routine.
  • If wounds are seen on the affected area and does not go even with treatments. This indicates the insufficient blood flow to the particular area and which needs to be increased.

What are the risks after the peripheral vascular bypass surgery?

The peripheral vascular bypass surgery may put a risk on the following health conditions:

  • Recurrence of the plaquein the treated extremity within afew months or years after the surgery, if necessary precautions are not taken.
  • Formation of a clot in a newly grafted vein, particularly in a saphenous vein.
  • Procedure may fail sometimes
  • Adverse events of anesthesia
  • Abnormal breathing
  • Possibility of Embolism - meaning a clot from the site where the procedure is performed may travel to blood vessels in the brain, heart and lungs.
  • Fluctuating blood pressure.
  • Infection at the surgical site.
  • Sexual dysfunction may occur after aortobifemoral bypass due to nerve injury.
  • Excessive bleeding after surgery.
  • Delayed healing of wounds.