To evaluate prospectively our experience with transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) using four different metallic stents.
Between November 1991 and April 1995, 57 patients (41 men and 16 women; age 35-72 years, mean 54 years) underwent the TIPS procedure. Techniques for portal vein localization before and during TIPS were fluoroscopy, computed tomography (CT) studies, wedged hepatic venography, arterial portography, and ultrasound. After predilation we deployed balloon-expandable (n = 48) and self-expanding (n = 45) metallic stents. Fifteen patients underwent variceal embolization. Initial follow-up angiograms (mean 6.9 months, range 3-24 months) were obtained in 39 of these patients.
Fifty-three patients (93%) had successful TIPS placement. The mean decrease in portal pressure was 42.7%. Besides fluoroscopy, the most helpful techniques for portal vein localization were venography and CT. Residual stenosis (n = 1) and late shortening (n = 4) of Wallstents resulted in shunt dysfunction. The technical problems encountered with the Palmaz stent resulted from its lack of flexibility. We combined balloon-expandable and self-expanding stents in 12 patients. The 30-day and late follow-up (mean 11.9 months) percutaneous reintervention rates were 11.3% and 64.2%, respectively. There were no clinically significant complications related to the TIPS insertions.
An ideal stent does not exist for TIPS, and the authors recommend combining a Palmaz stent with a flexible self-expanding stent.
Useful keywords (using NLM MeSH Indexing)
Esophageal and Gastric Varices/radiography
Esophageal and Gastric Varices/therapy*
Portasystemic Shunt, Transjugular Intrahepatic/instrumentation*
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