Functional Performance After Complex Endovascular Aortic Repair: A Single-Center Retrospective Cohort Study.

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Complex endovascular aortic repair (EVAR) procedures provide a treatment option for patients with aortic aneurysms involving visceral branches. Good technical results and short-term outcomes have been reported. Whether complex EVAR provides acceptable functional outcomes is not clear. The current study aims to describe postoperative functional outcomes in complex EVAR patients-an older and relatively frail patient group.A single-center retrospective cohort study was performed, using data from a computerized database of consecutive patients who underwent complex EVAR in the Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC, The Netherlands) between July 2013 and September 2020. As of May 2017, patients scheduled for complex EVAR were referred to a geriatric care pathway to determine (Instrumental) Activities of Daily Living ((I)ADL) scores at baseline and, if informed consent was given, after 12 months. For the total patient group, adverse functional performance outcomes were: discharge to a nursing home and 12-month mortality. For the patients included in geriatric follow-up, the additional outcome was the incidence of functional decline (defined by a ≥2 point increase in (I)ADL-score) at 12-month follow-up.Eighty-two patients underwent complex EVAR, of which 68 (82.9%) were male. Mean age was 73.3 years (SD=6.3). Within 30 days postsurgery, 6 patients (7.3%) died. Mortality within 12 months for the total patient group was 14.6% (n=12). After surgery, no patients had to be discharged to a nursing home. Fifteen patients (18.3%) were discharged to a rehabilitation center. Twenty-three patients gave informed consent and were included in geriatric follow-up. Five patients (21.7%) presented functional decline 12 months postsurgery and 4 patients had died (17.4%) by that time. This means that 39.1% of the patients in the care pathway suffered an adverse outcome.To our knowledge, this is the only study that examined functional performance after complex EVAR, using a prospectively maintained database. No patients were newly discharged to a nursing home and functional performance results at 12 months are promising. Future multidisciplinary research should focus on determining which patients are most prone to deterioration of function, so that efforts can be directed toward preventing postoperative functional decline.

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Authors: Britt W C M Warmerdam, Yara van Holstein, Daniël Eefting, Carla S P van Rijswijk, Rutger W van der Meer, Simon P Mooijaart, Jaap F Hamming, Joost R van der Vorst, Jan van Schaik