Surgical management of aneurysms of arteriovenous fistulae in hemodialysis patients: A case series
Christopher SP Valentine, Olugbenga Aworanti
Department of Surgery, Cornwall Regional Hospital, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Background: One of the complications of arteriovenous (AV) fistulae used for hemodialysis is aneurysm formation and subsequent risk for rupture. Surgery is one of the modalities utilised to treat this condition.
Methods: A retrospective review of medical records was done to identify patients managed surgically at our institution over a four-year period. The surgical procedures varied from aneurysmectomy alone, to partial aneurysmectomy with preservation of the fistula, to aneurysmectomy and creation of a new fistula.
Results: Seven patients who had undergone AV fistula aneurysm were identified. The usual presentation was of a pulsatile, expansile mass at the site of the AV fistula scar associated with pain. Two patients presented with bleeding. Patients in whom preservation of the fistula was attempted had poor patency of the fistula postoperatively. All patients in whom aneurysmectomy with creation of a new fistula was done had a functional fistula postoperatively.
Discussion: Others have described surgical techniques for fistula preservation, but these have necessitated a significant delay until use of the fistula. Arterial blood flow in a new fistula increases gradually for up to 10 days, then tapers off. Therefore, it should be possible to begin use of the fistula at this time.
Conclusions: AV fistula aneurysms may be treated by aneurysmectomy and creation of a new fistula. This may also reduce the waiting time before the fistula can be used for dialysis.
Keywords: arteriovenous fistula, aneurysm, hemodialysis aneurysm, pseudoaneurysm