Stents in dialysis vascular access - Do they promise improved high quality prolonged access use

Osnat Klein*, Eleonora Plotkin, Igal Gritun, Myriam Verner, J. M. Lehmann, Mauro Rathaus, Jacques Bernheim

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The life expectancy of dialysis patients depends, to a large extent, on blood access which provides uninterrupted and efficient treatment. Dialysis access created by a direct anastomosis between artery and vein usually allows normal dialysis for many years. Blood access by a bridge graft between artery and vein functions for a much shorter time and occludes chiefly because of endothelial hyperplasia at the graft vein anastomosis. This type of fistula is created when the veins of the patient are small. During the last few years the dialysis population is increasingly composed of adult and elderly patients suffering from diabetes mellitus, hypertension, dyslipidemias and atheromatous vascular disease so that a relatively large proportion of dialysis accesses are created using a bridge graft. Since we currently do not have the knowledge of how to arrest or delay the processes which lead to access occlusion, attempts are made to implement prophylactic strategies, find stenoses and dilate them before the access fails. Up to date, controlled trials have not succeeded in proving that this method prolongs access use. These trials did not describe the use of stents following dilatation. Materials and methods: Between July 2002 and May 2005, 238 angiographies were performed on blood accesses including 179 angioplasties of stenoses. In sixteen patients a stent was deployed during the angioplasty. Results: In ten patients dialysis was performed using the same access up to the end of the study period, an average of 43 months from the creation of the access. Three patients died with a functioning access and in three the access occluded during the period of follow-up. Discussion: This study shows that the use of stents following angioplasty of dialysis access stenoses can improve the duration of use of accesses created throuqh grafts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-106
Number of pages4
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2008


  • Angioplasty
  • Blood access
  • Hemodialysis
  • Stenosis
  • Stent


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