Henry Ford Hospital Medical Journal


In an attempt to determine the efficacy of the polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) graft as a portacaval interposition shunt, 26 mongrel dogs were randomly selected to receive a side-to-side shunt with a 6 mm, 8 mm, or 10 mm PTFE graft after portal hypertension had been created by hepatic vein ligation. The dogs were clinically observed, and if they showed signs of graft occlusion, they were reexplored surgically. The 6 mm graft had a 0% patency rate; the 8 mm graft had a 28.6% patency rate; and the 10 mm graft had an 87.5% patency rate. Histological examinations revealed adequate incorporation of the graft, formation of an endothelial layer, and absence of a thick intimal layer. In this experimental model, the PTFE graft served as a satisfactory portacaval interposition shunt when the 10 mm graft was used.