Current approaches to spinal cord protection during open thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm repair
Spinal cord deficit (SCD) is a feared complication after thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm repair. Vigilant management throughout the perioperative period is necessary to reduce the risk of SCD. Measures for preventing SCD during the intraoperative period include preoperative optimization and recognizing patients at a higher risk of SCD. In this manuscript, we discuss intraoperative adjuncts including utilization of cerebrospinal fluid drainage, left heart bypass, mild hypothermia, selective reimplantation of intercostal and lumbar arteries, and renal and visceral vessel perfusion. From the operative to the postoperative period, careful attention to avoiding hypotension and anemia is important. If SCD is recognized early, therapeutic intervention may be implemented to mitigate injury.