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Anesthesia for descending thoracic aortic surgery

Ferenc Puskas, MD, PhD, MBA
Nathan Clendenen, MD, MS
Section Editor
Peter D Slinger, MD, FRCPC
Deputy Editors
Nancy A Nussmeier, MD, FAHA
Kathryn A Collins, MD, PhD, FACS


Open surgical repair of the descending thoracic aorta is used to manage thoracic aortic pathology such as aneurysm, dissection, or injury in selected patients. Despite advances in surgical, perfusion, and anesthetic techniques, mortality and significant morbidity may occur during open repair due to ischemia that can affect the brain, spinal cord, kidney, viscera, and extremities.

Although an endovascular surgical approach (ie, thoracic endovascular aortic repair [TEVAR]) is often preferred due to a lower incidence of perioperative complications, open repair or a hybrid open/endovascular procedure is necessary in some cases. (See "Overview of open surgical repair of the thoracic aorta", section on 'Descending aorta' and "Endovascular repair of the thoracic aorta".)

This topic will review anesthetic management for patients undergoing open surgical repair of the descending thoracic aorta. Separate topics review anesthetic management of patients undergoing endovascular aortic procedures or open surgical repair of other aortic segments (eg, the abdominal aorta, ascending aorta, aortic arch):

(See "Anesthesia for endovascular aortic repair".)

(See "Anesthesia for open abdominal aortic surgery".)

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Literature review current through: Nov 2017. | This topic last updated: Nov 01, 2017.
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