The bypass vessels of the lower limbs: what is it?

Bypass grafting of blood vessels is called the surgery, whose task is creating a workaround to the flow of blood. This is usually necessary if the lumen of the artery or vein is narrowed due to atherosclerotic changes or thrombosis. Also, the bypass vessels is indicated in advanced cases, insufficiency of blood circulation, coronary heart disease and gangrene.

Features of shunt vessels of the lower extremities

Indications for this operation, the legs are somewhat different from those for diseases of the chest or the whole body. Most often, the bypass vessels of the lower extremities is necessary when:

  • atherosclerosis of the arteries and veins of the legs;
  • aneurysm (abnormal expansion of the use) of lower extremities vessels;
  • disease (chronic, not fully reversible disease that leads to narrowing of the lumen of the artery up to its full overlap; cells of tissues and organs received less the required elements gradually die off);
  • varicose veins;
  • gangrenous lesions of the legs;
  • other pathologies in which there is ischemia (insufficient oxygen content of certain tissues).

Preparation for surgical intervention

It should be noted that the operation is usually done only in extreme cases (if you can only help bypass surgery or amputation of a limb). While bedridden or critically ill patients is recommended to refer to the second method. Mandatory conditions are the absence of concomitant diseases of obesity and satisfactory condition of the donor artery. This implies that the shunting vessels is not a panacea, and contraindications to surgery should be approached very seriously. Otherwise, surgical intervention may not only be effective but also be fatal for the patient.

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The first step in the preparation for the operation should be careful diagnosis in the presence of other diseases (especially cardiovascular system), obesity and other reasons that can cause complications.
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Then prescribed an ultrasound, and angiography is necessary to assess the status of blood vessels in the area, where it will undergo bypass surgery. These methods will allow you to identify other problems in the blood flow in the tissue, and verify the satisfactory condition of the donor artery. Particularly important is the diagnosis of saphenous veins, because it determines the efficiency of the operation and durability of the shunt. Artificial prostheses are used only in extreme cases. This method is usually not effective, in the best case, the lumen of the shunt will close immediately, but over 2 – 3 years.

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Features of the operation

Depending on the complexity of the situation, the size of the required intervention and the patient’s condition, the doctor administers General or local anesthesia. Pre-selected vein or artificial graft is used as a connecting «tube». Sew it on two sides: above and below the lesion. This creates a detour for blood flow. After the operation the doctor evaluates the effectiveness of the intervention using repeated ultrasound examination.

Recovery after bypass surgery of blood vessels

In the first few hours after bypass surgery circulation is restored. Leg can become very hot, the veins in the foot become more noticeable because of their normal blood supply. The character of the pain in the limb changes, the patient becomes easier to hold your leg up. Painful sensations can be similar to a burning sensation and are usually just 3 – 5 days. Hospitalization is required only in the first week and a half after surgery. The sutures are removed at 7 to 8 days after the surgery. Swelling found in almost all patients and might not go for a few months.

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The bypass vessels of the lower extremities is effective in 85 – 90% of cases. However, a positive result only lasts 5 years. Naturally, throughout this period you need to follow the normal health in every way to prevent the thrombus formation or the deposition of cholesterol on the inner walls of blood vessels. We must not forget the systematic survey.

Do not self-medicate, time to see your doctor and be healthy!