Is elevated creatinine level a contraindication to endovascular aneurysm repair?

Manish Mehta, Frank J. Veith, Evan C. Lipsitz, Takao Ohki, George Russwurm, Neal S. Cayne, William D. Suggs, Paul J. Feustel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Purpose: It is widely believed that chronic renal insufficiency (CRI) greatly increases the risk associated with endovascular abdominal aortic aneurysm repair (EVAR) and is a relative contraindication to the procedure and to the use of intra-arterial contrast agents (IACA). We reviewed a 5-year EVAR experience to determine whether the procedure and use of IACA have an important deleterious effect on renal function in patients with and without pre-existing CRI. Methods: Endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR) was performed in 200 patients with a variety of endografts, with intra-arterial contrast agents. The patients were retrospectively assigned to three groups on the basis of preoperative serum creatinine concentration (Cr): group 1 (n = 108), Cr less than 1.5 mg/dL (normal range); group 2 (n = 65), Cr 1.5 to 2.0 mg/dL; group 3 (n = 27), Cr 2.1 to 3.5 mg/dL. No patients had undergone hemodialysis. In groups 2 and 3, patients received hydration perioperatively, and received mannitol intraoperatively; no nephrotoxic drugs were administered during the procedure, other than nonionic contrast agent (Omnipaque 350). Results: The incidence of postoperative complications between the three study groups was not statistically different. In group 1 a transient increase in serum Cr (>30% over baseline and >1.4 mg/dL) was noted in three patients (2.7%), two of whom (1.9%) required temporary hemodialysis and one (0.9%) who died of renal failure. In group 2 a transient increase in serum Cr was noted in two patients (3.1%); both patients (3.1%) required temporary hemodialysis, and one patient (1.5%) died of renal failure. In group 3 a transient increase in serum Cr was noted in two patients (7.4%); one patient (3.7%) required temporary hemodialysis, and one patient (3.7%) died of renal failure. Perioperative hypotension significantly increased the risk for elevated serum Cr and death (P < .05), and larger contrast volume was associated with an increase in serum Cr (P < .05) during the postoperative period. Conclusions: EVAR with intra-arterial contrast agents can be accomplished in patients with chronic renal insufficiency who do not require dialysis, with limited and acceptable morbidity and mortality, similar to that observed with open aneurysm repair. Contrary to other reports in which perioperative precautions were not used, our study shows that with EVAR the risk for worsening renal failure, dialysis, and death is only slightly, and not significantly, greater in patients with preoperative chronic renal insufficiency compared with patients with normal renal function. Perioperative hypotension and increased contrast volume are significant risk factors for postoperative increase in serum Cr and death. With appropriate precautions such as averting perioperative hypotension and limiting the volume of nonionic contrast agents, elevated Cr need not be a contraindication to EVAR with intra-arterial contrast agents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)118-123
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Vascular Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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