Avoiding general anesthesia for elective endovascular repair of abdominal aortic aneurysms reduces postoperative complications and possibly costs, an observational study suggested.
Spinal and local anesthesia both were associated with significantly less pulmonary morbidity and shorter length of stay compared with general anesthesia, Matthew S. Edwards, MD, of Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., and colleagues found.
Epidurals didn't seem to be any better than general anesthesia on any count, but none of the less-invasive anesthesia methods hurt mortality rates, the group reported in the November issue of the Journal of Vascular Surgery.
Use of local anesthesia, with or without monitored anesthesia care, or spinal anesthesia should increase for suitable patients, Edwards' group argued.
Endovascular techniques were originally introduced to reduce the risk of open surgical repair for the "relatively high-risk population inherent with aneurysmal disease of the aorta," they noted.