Vascular catastrophes following pancreas transplantation: An evolution in strategy at a single center

Jonathan A. Fridell, Matthew S. Johnson, William C. Goggins, Thiago Beduschi, Muhammad A. Mujtaba, Michelle L. Goble, John A. Powelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Introduction: Complications of pancreas transplantation involving the arterial anastomosis are potentially life threatening. In this report, we review our experience with such vascular catastrophes. Methods: Pancreas transplants performed between January 2003 and December 2009 were reviewed. All cases of pseudoaneurysm (PA) or arterioenteric fistula (AEF) were included. Results: Of 346 pancreas transplants, 10 vascular catastrophes in nine recipients were identified. There were five PAs, one involving the pancreas allograft, one involving the donor iliac artery Y-graft stump following allograft pancreatectomy, two involving the kidney allograft, and one involving the bifurcation of the Y-graft. The latter was treated with coil embolization, but subsequently developed into an AEF. There were five AEFs including the recipient mentioned above. Four had a failed allograft and three had discontinued immunosuppression. The final case had a clamp injury to the proximal common iliac artery that fistulized to the donor duodenum. The management, course and outcome of all nine recipients are described in detail. Conclusion: Vascular catastrophes such as PA and AEF are potentially life-threatening complications of pancreas transplantation. Immediate treatment at the time of bleeding is essential and covered stenting of the involved artery may provide immediate vascular control in these situations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)164-172
Number of pages9
JournalClinical Transplantation
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Angiography
  • Arterioenteric fistula
  • Gastrointestinal bleeding
  • Pancreas transplantation
  • Pseudoaneurysm
  • Simultaneous kidney and pancreas transplantation
  • Stent
  • Vascular complications

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation


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