Repeat median sternotomy after prior ante-aortic crossover right internal thoracic artery grafting

Oren Lev-Ran*, Raphael Mohr, Galit Aviram, Menachem Matsa, Nahum Nesher, Dmitry Pevni, Gideon Uretzky

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Background: In situ bilateral internal thoracic artery (ITA), with ante-aortic crossover right ITA (RITA) is gaining popularity. However, the retrosternal position of the crossover RITA has raised concerns with regard to its compromise during subsequent resternotomy. Methods: Ten patients underwent repeat median sternotomy after prior ante-aortic crossover RITA grafting. Specific RITA routing and fixation had been performed in the initial operation. Preoperative imaging, including computed tomography (CT) angiography, was performed to confirm RITA position in relation to the sternum and assess feasibility. Results: Resternotomy was performed 4-48 months after the initial operation (median, 22 months). Nine crossover RITA grafts were functioning at the time of resternotomy. CT angiography was performed in four patients in whom the premarked RITA could not be localized on the plain chest radiograph. The feasibility of conducting a nonmodified resternotomy was determined based on preoperative imaging. All RITA grafts resumed their original position and none was injured during reentry. There was no early mortality, perioperative stroke, or reexploration for bleeding. One patient sustained myocardial infarction, however, not in a RITA-related distribution. CT angiography was predictive in confirming a free retrosternal space. Conclusions: Resternotomy after prior ante-aortic crossover RITA grafting can be performed at acceptable risk. Confirmation of a free retrosternal space by preoperative imaging may contribute to the safety of the procedure. Maneuvers performed during the first operation are useful in preventing RITA adherence to the sternum.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)151-154
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Cardiac Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2004


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