OBJECTIVES. To determine the outcome of surgical intervention in patients with HIV associated vascular disease.
DESIGN. Prospective clinical survey.
MATERIALS & METHODS. Routine voluntary testing for HIV/AIDS was performed in patients who presented to our unit with peripheral vascular disease. One hundred and nine patients (5.7%) were prospectively identified over a 5-year period (2001–2006).
RESULTS. 24 patients presented with aneurysmal disease whilst occlusive disease was present in 66 patients. There was not much difference between patients with aneurysmal disease and patients with occlusive disease as to age, CD4 count and other risk factors for vascular disease. The peri-operative mortality for aneurysmal disease was 10.6% versus 3.6% for occlusive disease (p = 0.264). Long-term mortality was significantly worse (p = 0.049) for patients with aneurysmal disease. The results of revascularization in occlusive disease were poor with a limb salvage rate of 31.6%. There was no significant difference in CD4 T-cell counts between primary amputation and revascularization groups (p = 0.058).
CONCLUSION. Patients with aneurysmal disease have a high peri-operative and long-term mortality and it appears that surgical intervention should be reserved for life-threatening aneurysms only. Patients with occlusive disease have a better survival rate but limb salvage is poor. Primary amputation may be preferable to bypass surgery in patients with critical limb ischaemia.