For citation purposes: Galyfos G, Sigala F, Zografos G, Filis K. Cardiac damage after vascular surgery procedures: A silent killer. OA Surgery 2014 Jan 18;2(1):1.


Vascular Surgery

Cardiac damage after vascular surgery procedures: a silent killer

G Galyfos, F Sigala, G Zografos, K Filis

Authors affiliations

Vascular Unit, 1st Department of Propaedeutic Surgery, Hippocration Hospital, University of Athens Medical School, 6 Melinas Merkouri Street, Neon Iraklion, 14122 Athens, Greece

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Perioperative myocardial ischaemia remains a major cardiovascular complication after non-cardiac, and especially vascular surgery. In this review, we try to identify the real significance of asymptomatic cardiac damage after vascular surgery and make conclusions regarding the proper perioperative management.


The mechanism of perioperative myocardial ischaemia can be explained through the reactions of the heart functioning under conditions of stress. Regarding preoperative assessment of the patients, there is a large number of clinical risk indices available, although some of them have been proved useful for vascular patients in specific. A large number of studies and randomised trials have underlined the high incidence of asymptomatic myocardial damage after vascular procedures and its association with postoperative mortality. However, the results of studies so far show a high diversity regarding the impact of certain risk factors, such as the gender and the age of the patient.


Perioperative myocardial ischaemia deserves the classification as a ‘silent killer’. Cautious preoperative cardiac assessment and proper perioperative management could lead to optimal results.

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