NYMC Faculty Publications

Direct Axillary Artery Cannulation for Type a Dissection and Impact of Dissected Innominate Artery

Author Type(s)


Journal Title

The Annals of Thoracic Surgery

First Page


Last Page


Document Type


Publication Date





BACKGROUND: This study assessed the safety of direct axillary artery (AX) cannulation for acute type A dissection (ATAD) repair, including the impact of innominate artery dissection (IAD). METHODS: Of 281 consecutive patients who underwent ATAD repair from 2007 to 2020, preoperative computed tomography was available in 200 (IAD, n = 101; non-IAD, n = 99). IAD with compromised true lumen was defined as dissection in which the false lumen was greater than 50% of the IA diameter (n = 75 of 101). RESULTS: AX cannulation was attempted in 188 patients (94.0%), with a 1.6% vascular injury rate (3 patients), comprising bypass to the distal AX in 2 patients and local dissection in 1 patient. Deep hypothermic circulatory arrest was used for the distal repair in 89.5% of patients. Right AX cannulation was used in 80.2% of patients with IAD and in 88.9% without IAD (P = .075). Patients with IAD had more cerebral (21.8% vs 5.1%, P = .001) and arm malperfsion (11.9% vs 4.0%, P = .075). Operative death and stroke were comparable between non-IAD (8.1% vs 7.9%, P = 1.00) and IAD (4.0% vs 5.3%, P = .689) groups. The right AX was successfully used in 77.3% of IAD patients with a compromised true lumen, with comparable hospital outcomes to noncompromised IAD patients. Upper extremity malperfusion, multiorgan malperfusion, low ejection fraction, and female sex were predictors for noncannulation of the right AX. CONCLUSIONS: Routine direct AX cannulation strategy is safe in ATAD repair. Right AX cannulation can be used in most patients with IAD, even with a compromised true lumen, with low mortality, stroke, and vascular injury rates.