HEMODIALYSIS ACESS – A CREATIVE ATTITUDE IS NECESSARY
Creating and maintaining a functional vascular access (VA) is a critical factor in the survival of a dialysis patient. It implies a creative attitude either to maintain its functionality or to build a new one wherever possible, being it autologous or synthetic. We describe the VA history of a 59 years-old male patient, with extreme obesity, which started in 2012 with failed attempts of VA construction in both forearms until a functional brachiocephalic arteriovenous fistula (AVF) in the right upper limb was achieved. However, it required ligation due to severe venous hypertension secondary to central venous disease related to previous CVC use. As he had no good superficial conduit in the left arm we decided to harvest the arterialized right cephalic vein and implant it in the left arm, creating an autologous arteriovenous shunt between the brachial artery and axillary vein (AV). Despite initial patency, it failed irreversibly approximately one year after creation. As no more superficial veins were available in the upper limbs, a prosthetic access was the next step. We decided for a hybrid graft (HG) between the left brachial artery and the AV because of the patient’s biotype and scarred axilla that impeded a safe re-intervention on the AV. This graft was used between 2015 and 2017 with multiple interventions to maintain patency. In 2017 a significant diffuse prosthesis deterioration and reduced AVF flow were noticed with no possible segmental reconstruction. We were then forced to proceed with subtotal graft substitution preserving the outflow stented segment of the HG, using an early cannulation graft to prevent CVC use. After this successful reconstruction, the patient started hemodialysis on the following day with no intercurrences registered.
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