An eight year experience of conservative management for aortic graft sepsis.
Gordon A., Conlon C., Collin J., Peto T., Gray D., Hands L., Morris P.
This paper describes the results of conservative management of 15 patients with aortic graft infection. The median time to presentation was 4 months. Six of eight grafts that were sent for culture grew organisms, of which the commonest were streptococci and coagulase negative staphylococci. Four patients did not receive intensive antibiotic treatment and all died of sepsis. Eleven patients received intensive intravenous and oral antibiotic therapy and appropriate surgical management; two of these died, one of a stroke and the other of an unknown cause. Two of the nine surviving patients had no surgery and the remainder had procedures to drain pus and unblock occluded grafts, including minimal graft excision in four patients, although two of these subsequently required total graft excision. The follow-up period for six of these nine patients is more than 4 years. For most patients with aortic graft infection aggressive antibiotic treatment supplemented by minimalist surgery is preferable to primary radical surgery.