Published online by Cambridge University Press: 21 May 2018
This study aimed to develop a method for retrieval of the new meshed nitinol atrial septal defect occluders – Ceraflex and Occlutech.
The newly developed atrial septal defect occluders have potential benefits considering implantation, but concerns regarding their removal in case of embolisation have been raised.
Over 21 years, 1449 patients underwent interventional atrial septal defect occlusion in our institution. We reviewed the cases of embolisation of the device, developed a strategy for device removal, and tested it on the benchside and in animal tests.
In 11 patients (0.8%), the intended atrial septal defect occlusion was complicated by an embolisation of the device. In contrast to the Amplatzer septal occluders, retrieval of Occlutech devices larger than 16 mm with snare techniques was impossible. In benchside tests, this was confirmed and a new method for removal of large meshed devices was developed. This involved the commercially available Maslanka® biopsy forceps. The feasibility of this technique in vivo was tested in a pig model. During animal tests, using the Maslanka biopsy forceps it was possible to interventionally retrieve embolised Ceraflex and Occlutech devices of different sizes – 10, 16, 30, and 40 mm – into a 12-F sheath.
It was impossible to retrieve Occlutech and Ceraflex devices larger than 16 mm into a large sheath in vivo and during benchside tests. However, this was feasible on the bench and in vivo using the Maslanka biopsy forceps even with the largest available devices.