Aorto-Femoral Bypass- Cardiology
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Doctors: Vascular surgeons
What is aortofemoral bypass?
Aortofemoral bypass (also known as aortobifemoral bypass) is a surgical technique to create a bypass around a large, clogged blood vessel in patient’s abdomen or groin. This procedure is mainly for the blood vessels that run between the aorta and the femoral arteries in legs.
This procedure is done when the large blood vessels in patient’s abdomen, groin, or pelvis are blocked. These large blood vessels might be the aorta, femoral or iliac arteries. Once these blood vessels are blocked, there is either none or very little blood flow into one leg or both legs.
During aortofemoral bypass, a graft is placed to bypass the clogged blood vessel. The graft is an artificial Y shape tube. During the procedure, the patient is given general anesthesia and small incision is made in the abdomen. Another incision is made in groin area. One single end of the graft is surgically attached to aorta before the blocked section and the other two ends of the graft are attached to two femoral arteries after the blocked section. This graft helps to redirect the blood flow and allows the blood to continue flowing past the blockage.
What to expect after the procedure?
After the procedure, patient is given pain medicines and required to stay in hospital for four to seven days. The pulses in patient’s legs are checked hourly to verify that the grafts are working appropriately. Patient will feel soreness in abdomen and groin along with tiredness for several weeks. Patient is asked to gradually increase the amount of time as well as walking distance each day. Patient is also asked to keep the legs raised during seated position. Patient might be able to do usual activities after 4 to 6 weeks, but 2 to 3 months are required for complete recovery.