Central Surgical Association| Volume 82, ISSUE 3, P400-406, September 1977

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Nonpenetrating trauma to the thoracic aorta

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      Twenty-seven patients underwent surgical repair for nonpenetrating injuries of the thoracic aorta. Emergency operation was performed in 19 patients with acute aortic injury and there were 12 survivors. Left heart bypass (LHB), external shunts, and simple aortic cross-clamping were methods employed during repair. All operative deaths occurred in the left heart bypass group. Morbidity, hospital stay, operative time, and blood loss all were markedly less in patients repaired with an external shunt or simple cross-clamping. Systemic heparinization related adversely to mortality and morbidity. Eight patients had repair of chronic post-traumatic descending aortic aneurysms. One of these had previous repair elsewhere with paraplegia and subsequent mycotic aneurysm at the graft repair site. He presented to us with massive hemoptysis. Surgical correction in the chronic group was performed using either left heart bypass, external shunt, or simple aortic cross-clamp with graft interposition. The only death occurred in a patient repaired on left heart bypass.
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