Outcomes after repair of ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm (RAAA) have improved in the last decade. It is unknown whether this has resulted in a reduction of postoperative bowel ischemia (BI). The primary objective was to determine BI prevalence after RAAA repair. Secondary objectives were to determine its major sequelae and differences between open repair (OR) and endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR).Methods
This systematic review (PROSPERO CRD42017055920) followed Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) and Meta-analysis Of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (MOOSE) guidelines. MEDLINE and Embase were searched for studies published from 2005 until 2018. The methodologic quality of observational studies was assessed with the Methodological Index for Non-Randomized Studies (MINORS) tool. The quality of the randomized controlled trials (RCTs) was assessed with the Cochrane Collaboration's tool for assessing risk of bias. BI prevalence and rates of BI as cause of death, reoperation, and bowel resection were estimated with meta-analyses with a random-effects model. Differences between OR and EVAR were estimated with pooled risk ratios with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Changes over time were assessed with Spearman rank test (ρ). Publication bias was assessed with a funnel plot analysis.Results
A total of 101 studies with 52,670 patients were included; 72 studies were retrospective cohort studies, 14 studies were prospective cohort studies, 12 studies were retrospective administrative database studies, and 3 studies were RCTs. The overall methodologic quality of the RCTs was high, but that of observational studies was low. The pooled prevalence of BI ranged from of 0.08 (95% CI, 0.07-0.09) in database studies to 0.10 (95% CI, 0.08-0.12) in cohort studies. The risk of BI was higher after OR than after EVAR (risk ratio, 1.79; 95% CI, 1.25-2.57). The pooled rate of BI as cause of death was 0.04 (95% CI, 0.03-0.05), and that of BI as cause of reoperation and bowel resection ranged between 0.05 and 0.07. BI prevalence did not change over time (ρ, −0.01; P = .93). The funnel plot analysis was highly suggestive of publication bias.Conclusions
The prevalence of clinically relevant BI after RAAA repair is approximately 10%. Approximately 5% of patients undergoing RAAA repair suffer from severe consequences of BI. BI is less prevalent after EVAR than after OR.