ISSN : 1301-5680
e-ISSN : 2149-8156
Turkish Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery     
Hakan Bingöl, Cengiz Bolcal, Ahmet Turan Yılmaz, Ufuk Demirkılıç, Harun Tatar
Gülhane Askeri Tıp Akademisi, Kalp Damar Cerrahisi Ana Bilim Dalı, Ankara
Background: Saphenous vein grafts (SVG) are used widespread in coronary bypass surgery. Recently, due to higher incidence of competence, usage of arterial grafts become more widespread when compared with SVG. In our study, we compared the wound infection between radial artery graft incision and SVG incision during graft harvesting.

Methods: From February 1995 to May 2002, 961 patients who underwent two vessel aortocoronary bypass were divided into three groups according to graft incision area. Left internal mammarian artery was used in all patients. Radial artery graft was used in Group 1 (n = 274), SVG above the knee in Group 2 (n = 233) and SVG below the knee in Group 3 (n = 454). Patients’ graft incisions were evaluated postoperatively.

Results: In Group 1, wound infection was not observed in any of the patients contrary to Group 2 and 3 (wound infection developed in 22 of 687 patients) (3.2%) (p < 0.05). Superficial skin infection (5 patients), deep wound infection (4 patients), delayed wound healing (3 patients), skin necrosis(2 patients), hematoma (one patient) was observed in Group 2 which as superficial skin infection (3 patients), deep wound infection (1 patient), delayed wound healing (2 patients), skin necrosis(1 patient) was observed in group III. Debritment of wound area was done to 11 patients, later skin graft was done in 2 of the patients. In one patient flap rotation was done.

Conclusion: Arterial grafts have lots of advantage when compared with vein grafts due to results of long term competence. We believe radial artery grafts are superior, considering graft patency rates and graft incision line infection rates, keeping lower morbidity due to lower infection at radial artery graft incision lines and cost effectiveness because of lower hospital stay time, incision dressing, additional surgical procedures etc. in mind.

Keywords : Radial artery, saphenous vein graft, graft incision, coronary bypass
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