Use of Expanded Polytetrafluoroethylene-covered Nitinol Stents for the Salvage of Dysfunctional Autogenous Hemodialysis Fistulas

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The use of expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE)-covered nitinol stents for salvage of hemodialysis fistulas was retrospectively examined. Seven covered stents were placed in five patients with failing fistulas considered unsalvageable. Indications included recurrent stenoses, thrombosis, and pseudoaneurysm formation. Before intervention, all patients required multiple interventions. The technical success rate was 100%. The primary patency rate was 80%, with secondary patency and lesion patency rates of 100% at 9 months. The incidence of follow-up repeat intervention was 0.3 per year. There were no complications. The use of ePTFE-covered stent placement in dysfunctional autogenous fistulas is technically feasible and, in this small series, was effective in preserving function and preventing access abandonment.

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