Feasibility and Outcomes of Femoral Vein Harvest for Dialysis Access and Arterial Reconstruction

Joanna W. Etra, Caitlin W. Hicks, Michol A. Cooper, Margaret Arnold, Thomas Reifsnyder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: We describe the feasibility and long-term outcomes of using femoral vein (FV) for arteriovenous fistula (AVF) and lower extremity bypass (LEB) creation. Methods: All patients undergoing AVF or LEB using autogenous FV by a single surgeon (April 2006 to September 2013) were reviewed. Perioperative (30-d) complications and long-term outcomes are described. Results: Forty-four patients underwent vascular reconstruction with FV (AVF = 27 and LEB = 17). Perioperative morbidity was 43.2%, including harvest site infection and or seroma in 15.9%. No patients suffered from compartment syndrome or venous thromboembolic event. At median follow-up of 50.0 mon, overall patency was 70.4% for AVF (primary = 37.0% and secondary = 70.3%) and 76.5% for LEB (primary = 70.6% and secondary = 76.5%). Long-term lower extremity swelling occurred in 18.2% of patients. Conclusions: Perioperative morbidity following FV harvest is high, but long-term patency rates are excellent. FV harvest is feasible and should be considered as a valid conduit in patients without useable great saphenous vein or other more commonly used sources of autogenous vein.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)50-55
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
StatePublished - May 2019


  • Arteriovenous fistula
  • Femoral vein
  • Lower extremity bypass

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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