Critical limb ischemia

Medical and surgical management

David P. Slovut, Timothy M. Sullivan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

75 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Chronic critical limb ischemia (CLI), defined as > 2 weeks of rest pain, ulcers, or tissue loss attributed to arterial occlusive disease, is associated with great loss of both limb and life. Therapeutic goals in treating patients with CLI include reducing cardiovascular risk factors, relieving ischemic pain, healing ulcers, preventing major amputation, improving quality of life and increasing survival. These aims may be achieved through medical therapy, revascularization, or amputation. Medical therapy includes administration of analgesics, local wound care and pressure relief, treatment of infection, and aggressive therapy to modify atherosclerotic risk factors. For patients who are not candidates for revascularization, and who are unwilling or unable to undergo amputation, treatments such as intermittent pneumatic compression or spinal cord stimulation may offer symptom relief and promote wound healing. Revascularization offers the best option for limb salvage. The decision to perform surgery, endovascular therapy, or a combination of the two modalities ('hybrid' therapy) must be individualized. Patients who are relatively fit and able to withstand the rigors of an open procedure may benefit from the long-term durability of surgical repair. In contrast, frail patients with a limited life expectancy may experience better outcomes with endovascular reconstruction. Hybrid therapy is an attractive option for patients with limited autologous conduit, as it permits complete revascularization with a less extensive procedure, shorter duration of operation, and decreased risk of peri-operative complications. Amputation should be considered for patients who are non-ambulatory, demented, or unfit to undergo revascularization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)281-291
Number of pages11
JournalVascular Medicine
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Ischemia
Extremities
Amputation
Therapeutics
Ulcer
Spinal Cord Stimulation
Pain
Arterial Occlusive Diseases
Limb Salvage
Life Expectancy
Wound Healing
Analgesics
Quality of Life
Pressure
Survival
Wounds and Injuries
Infection

Keywords

  • Critical limb ischemia
  • Medical therapy
  • Revascularization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Cite this

Critical limb ischemia : Medical and surgical management. / Slovut, David P.; Sullivan, Timothy M.

In: Vascular Medicine, Vol. 13, No. 3, 2008, p. 281-291.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Slovut, David P. ; Sullivan, Timothy M. / Critical limb ischemia : Medical and surgical management. In: Vascular Medicine. 2008 ; Vol. 13, No. 3. pp. 281-291.
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