Repetitive bypass and revisions with extensions for limb salvage after multiple previous failures

Evan C. Lipsitz, Frank J. Veith, Neal S. Cayne, John Harvey, Soo J. Rhee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The optimal treatment of patients facing imminent amputation after multiple (≥2) failed prior ipsilateral bypasses is unclear. We analyzed a group of patients undergoing multiple lower extremity bypasses for limb salvage to assess the utility of attempting multiple revascularizations. From 1990 to 2005, 105 revascularization procedures were performed in 55 limbs of 54 patients with imminent limb-threatening lower extremity ischemia after failure of ≥2 prior infrainguinal bypasses in the same leg. Fifty-five operations were the third procedure (Group A) and 50 operations were the fourth or more (Group B). We compared primary/ secondary patency and limb salvage rates by Society for Vascular Surgery criteria. Limb salvage rates did not differ between patients undergoing a third bypass and those undergoing four or more bypasses at one year (62 versus 65%, NS) or at three years (58 versus 61%, NS). Secondary patency was not different between groups (76 versus 76%, P = NS) at one and three years (71 versus 70%, NS). Primary patency also did not differ between the two groups, at one year (24 versus 35%, NS), or at three years (11 versus 15%, NS). No differences were observed in morbidity and mortality rates between the groups. In conclusion, the likelihood of success of repetitive limb revascularization was unrelated to the number of previous failures. The expected incremental failure rate with each successive bypass was not found. These results, coupled with the three-year limb salvage rate of over 50% in patients who otherwise would have required amputation, lend support to aggressive use of limb revascularization in selected patients even after two or more failed bypasses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-68
Number of pages6
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2013


  • Limb salvage
  • Lower extremity
  • Multiple bypasses
  • Occlusive disease
  • Peripheral arterial disease
  • Repeat bypass
  • Revascularization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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