Aortobifemoral bypass surgery is a necessity for individuals experiencing symptoms of Lyriche Syndrome. Also termed as Aortoiliac Occlusive Disease, the syndrome was initially diagnosed during the 1950s, henceforth which several medications and therapeutic measures had been devised. Eventually, the necessity of bypass surgery in order to make amendments in the diseased or damaged vessels arose. The Aortobifemoral Bypass surgical procedure is implemented to provide an alternative pathway for the passage of blood instead of the diseased vessel.
The procedure is highly preferred to individuals who show symptoms of PAD or Peripheral Arterial Disease. In this, the inner walls of the major blood vessels get coated with waxy plaque. The plaque is generally formed up of cholesterol, fat, cells, and calcium which makes the flow of blood restricted. This is turn limits the supply of oxygen, nutrients, and minerals. When this problem arises in the junction between the aorta and the femoral vessel, the need for aortobifemoral bypass arises. The procedure is quite similar to heart bypass surgery in which the blood is redirected in a similar fashion.
1. What is Aortobifemoral Bypass?
Aortobifemoral Bypass offers a different path for passage of blood when facing obstruction in the regular bath. The procedure specifically helps relieve the pressure building up between the parts (major artery) and the femoral artery which is the situation in the lower limbs. The bypass surgery is accomplished with the use of special grafts devised for the purpose. These grafts ideally serve as an alternative passage enabling normal blood circulation between the aorta and the femoral vessel but essentially skips the damaged portion. The procedure is simple and involves connecting either of the ends of the graft to the aorta (the part that is not damaged) and the femoral artery respectively in order to establish an unrestricted connection.
The grafts used are “Y” in shape, whose tail is connected to the aorta. The incision is made in the lower abdominal region or the groin, where the femoral arteries bifurcate into two femoral arteries, one in each of the legs. Thus, the two forked arms of the Y-shaped graft are connected to each and the connection is reestablished. The procedure is highly successful in reducing the symptoms of PAD or Aortoiliac Occlusive Disease and is thus implemented all across the world. In general, a standard aortobifemoral bypass surgery costs vary from $8000 to $13,000 depending on the extent of the procedure required and complications if any.
2. When is it used or recommended?
Aortobifemoral bypass surgery is solely recommended in the case of blockage in a blood vessel, occurring in the iliac or the femoral arteries. These restrict complete or partial blood flow and cause loss of sensation in the legs. The condition is often painful and needs to be treated medically. In severe cases, where chances of limb loss may arise, the surgical procedure of implanting grafts is needed preliminary. The various conditions which may lead to aortobifemoral bypass surgery are:
- Artery blockage
- Narrowing of arterial lumen due to deposition of various substances
- Aortoiliac disease
- Peripheral Artery Disease, abbreviated as PAD
The symptoms might go unnoticed in the initial stages of the condition, however, if the symptoms persist both during dynamic as well as stationary state, the surgical procedure should be implemented. The symptoms may include:
- Pain in either or both legs
- Restricted physical activity
- The heaviness of the legs even when at a relaxed state
- Persistent throbbing sensation or the constant feeling of strain
3. Outcome and what to expect after surgery
Aortobifemoral bypass surgery flaunts a high success rate with an outstanding 80% record for long term (10 years) survival rate. The surgical procedure ideally helps in reducing the symptoms manifolds and helps the candidate to live a pain-free, normal life for approximately 10 years. Post the completion of the period, the candidate may or may not require another procedure. A large number of candidates are capable of retaining heavy physical activities, which if not permitted by medical professionals, should be avoided at all costs.
Post-aortobifemoral bypass surgery, the candidate is kept under observation for twelve hours, henceforth, the stay might be extended for a period of 5 to 7 days. The individual is closely monitored for any possible complication, risks and other issues that might raise an alarm in the near or far future. The monitoring is also performed to study the movement of the limb and the candidate’s response to the procedure. Possible risk factors attached to the procedure are:
- Blockage in the graft implanted
- Failure of successful graft implantation
- Cardiac arrest
- Excessive bleeding
- Damage of nearby nerves (may also result in sexual dysfunction)
- Serious infection.