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Long-term follow-up of surgically excluded popliteal artery aneurysms with multi-slice CT angiography and Doppler ultrasound

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the role of multi-slice computed tomography (MSCT) angiography in the follow-up of popliteal artery aneurysms (PAAs) that have been operated on. Aneurysm exclusion and progression, graft patency and graft-related complications were analyzed. Fourteen patients with 21 surgically excluded PAAs were evaluated with MSCT angiography with slice thickness of 1.25 mm. The mean follow-up time was 67 months. MSCT demonstrated blood flow in six non-excluded PAAs (24%), with an average increase in the diameter of 21 mm over time. Fifteen PAAs demonstrated no blood flow and revealed an average decrease of 7 mm in diameter. The origin of this residual perfusion was demonstrated, and collaterals were involved in five of six non-excluded PAAs. In addition, MSCT demonstrated three graft stenoses. Furthermore, two occluded grafts were visualized. Twenty-four percent of the patients after surgical exclusion of PAAs revealed residual perfusion within the aneurysmal sac during follow-up, with a significant increase in the aneurysmal size with MSCT. Moreover, evaluation of the graft patency could also be done as could demonstration of anastomotic abnormalities. Thus, MSCT might be considered as a new tool to evaluate residual collateral feeding of popliteal aneurysmal sac and could be useful in identification and localization of feeding vessels.

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