The fate of the left subclavian artery in TEVAR for aortic arch pathology

Mohamad Bashir, Damian Bailey, William D. Jones, Richard D. White, Ian M. Williams*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and aim of study: The origin of the vertebral artery (VA) from the left subclavian (LSA) is variable and must be considered when proximal ligation or embolization is performed post thoracic endovascular aortic repair (TEVAR) and extra-anatomical bypass (EAB). A retrospective study was conducted to understand the patency of the LSA and VAs after TEVAR and the relationship of the EAB to the LSA. Methods: Fifty-six patients underwent TEVAR where the LSA origin was occluded. A comparison was performed between the length of the proximal LSA from the arch of the aorta to the origin of the VA. Patient outcomes included posterior or anterior circulation cerebrovascular accident, spinal cord ischemia (SCI), and symptoms and signs of left arm ischemia (LAI). Thirty one underwent EAB with 8 undergoing occlusion of the LSA proximal to the origin of the left VA. A further 25 underwent TEVAR with no EAB performed. The mean (standard deviation) of origin of the VA from the origin at the arch was 37.0 (12.9) mm compared to 34.0 (13.7) mm in those where no bypass was performed (p 0.45). Four patients underwent intraluminal plug occlusion and four had external ligation of the proximal LSA in those undergoing EAB. Conclusions: Careful evaluation of the LSA is needed when planning TEVAR as occlusion techniques may be dependent on a minimum length of the VA from the aortic arch. The mean length of the VA from the aorta has high heterogeneity which may dictate the optimum occlusion method for LSA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3547-3553
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cardiac Surgery
Issue number10
Early online date26 Jul 2021
Publication statusPublished - 8 Sept 2021


  • aorta
  • arch surgery
  • subclavian artery
  • vertebral artery


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