Seven (4%) of 193 patients developed lymphoceles in 8 (2%) of 316 groin wounds after 211 arterial reconstructive procedures. Included were 91 aortic, 15 extra-anatomic, and 105 infrainguinal revascularizations. Lymphoceles developed in otherwise uncomplicated wounds in 6 (8%) of 73 patients with oblique incisions and bilaterally in 1 (1%) of 120 patients with vertical incisions (p=0.01). This difference may be related to the surgical technique, with increased lymphatic damage and inadequate woundclosure in the oblique approach. No increased incidence of lymphorrhea was noted in those patients undergoing aortic reconstruction regardless of the type of incision used (p=0.15), or when compared with patients who had undergone extra-anatomic or infrainguinal bypass (p=0.14). Each lymphocele was persistent, and external fistulas spontaneously occurred in three. Diagnosis was based upon clinical awareness and the appearance of the groin mass. Conservative management was uniformly unsuccessful, and operative ablation of the lymph fistula and lymphocele proved to be definitive therapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas