Publications by authors named "Matthew A Corriere"

79 Publications

Claviculectomy for exposure and redo repair of expanding, recurrent right subclavian aneurysm.

J Vasc Surg Cases Innov Tech 2021 Dec 29;7(4):694-697. Epub 2021 Sep 29.

Department of Surgery, Section of Vascular Surgery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich.

Subclavian artery aneurysms (SAAs) are rare, and their repair can be technically complex. We have reported the redo repair of a large, expanding, right SAA after primary repair consisting of total aortic arch replacement with bilateral subclavian artery ligation and bypass. The redo repair used claviculectomy to facilitate exposure, ligation of the right deep cervical and internal thoracic arteries from within the aneurysm sac, and revision of the previous axillary artery bypass that had thrombosed owing to the mass effect of the expanding SAA. Claviculectomy can facilitate repair of large SAAs that are poorly suited to more routine exposure approaches, with acceptable risk and functional outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jvscit.2021.08.014DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8556485PMC
December 2021

Industry Compensation to Physician Vascular Specialist Authors of Highly-referenced Aortic Aneurysm Studies.

Ann Vasc Surg 2021 Jul 2;74:410-418. Epub 2021 Apr 2.

Department of Surgery, Section of Vascular Surgery; Center for Health Outcomes and Policy, Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine; University of Michigan; Ann Arbor, Michigan. Electronic address:

Background: Industry payments to physicians may influence their attitudes toward medical devices and products. Disclosure of industry compensation by authors of scientific manuscripts usually occurs at the authors' discretion and is seldom audited as part of the peer review process. The purpose of this analysis was to characterize industry compensation among highly cited research articles related to aortic aneurysm.

Methods: A Web of Science search for English language articles published from 2013-2017 using the search term "aortic aneurysm" identified publications for this study. The top 99 most-cited publications were abstracted by author. Physician authors with reported industry compensation from 2013-2016 were identified using the ProPublica Dollars for Docs search tool (linked to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Open Payments data), based on provider name, medical specialty, and geographic location. Statistical analysis included descriptive statistics and categorical tests.

Results: The 99 articles had 1,264 unique authors, of whom 105 physicians (8.3%) received industry compensation during the study period. Fourteen of the 105 authors self-reported having received industry compensation. The remaining 91 authors (86.7%) did not disclose their industry-reported compensation. Industry payments during the study period totaled $6,082,574 paid through 13,489 transactions from 169 different manufacturers. In-kind items and services were the most common form of payment (65.3%). The median transaction amount was $58.32. [$138.34]. Food and beverage accounted for the largest number of transactions (N=9653), followed by travel and lodging (N=2365), consulting (N=513), and promotional speaking (N=436). Consulting accounted for the most total dollars over the study period ($1,970,606), followed by travel and lodging ($1,122,276), promotional speaking ($972,894), food and beverage ($568,251), royalty or license ($504,631), honoraria ($452,167), and education ($428,489). Royalty and license payments had the highest median transaction amount ($15,418. [$29,049]), and was the only category with a median transaction amount greater than $5,000. In contrast, several categories had median transaction amounts under $50, including food and beverage ($32. [$77]), gifts ($34. [$86]), and entertainment ($30. [$69]). No significant difference in payment amounts by medical specialty was identified (P=0.071).

Conclusions: Only 8.3% of physician authors of highly cited aortic aneurysm studies received industry compensation, but 86.7% of those physician authors receiving payments did not disclose industry compensation within the manuscripts. Potential bias associated with industry compensation may be underestimated and conservatively biased based on author self-reporting.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2021.01.103DOI Listing
July 2021

Exploring the rapid expansion of office-based laboratories and peripheral vascular interventions across the United States.

J Vasc Surg 2021 09 19;74(3):997-1005.e1. Epub 2021 Feb 19.

Section of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich.

Objective: To characterize the relationship between office-based laboratory (OBL) use and Medicare payments for peripheral vascular interventions (PVI).

Methods: Using the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Provider Utilization and Payment Data Public Use Files from 2014 to 2017, we identified providers who performed percutaneous transluminal angioplasty, stent placement, and atherectomy. Procedures were aggregated at the provider and hospital referral region (HRR) level.

Results: Between 2014 and 2017, 2641 providers performed 308,247 procedures. The mean payment for OBL stent placement in 2017 was $4383.39, and mean payment for OBL atherectomy was $13,079.63. The change in the mean payment amount varied significantly, from a decrease of $16.97 in HRR 146 to an increase of $43.77 per beneficiary over the study period in HRR 11. The change in the rate of PVI also varied substantially, and moderately correlated with change in payment across HRRs (R = 0.40; P < .001). The majority of HRRs experienced an increase in rate of PVI within OBLs, which strongly correlated with changes in payments (R = 0.85; P < .001). Furthermore, 85% of the variance in change in payment was explained by increases in OBL atherectomy (P < .001).

Conclusions: A rapid shift into the office setting for PVIs occurred within some HRRs, which was highly geographically variable and was strongly correlated with payments. Policymakers should revisit the current payment structure for OBL use and, in particular atherectomy, to better align the policy with its intended goals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jvs.2021.01.061DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8373995PMC
September 2021

Elective Surgical Delays Due to COVID-19: The Patient Lived Experience.

Med Care 2021 04;59(4):288-294

Center for Healthcare Outcomes and Policy.

Background: This qualitative research explored the lived experiences of patients who experienced postponement of elective cardiac and vascular surgery due to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We know very little about patients during the novel coronavirus pandemic. Understanding the patient voice may play an important role in prioritization of postponed cases and triage moving forward.

Methods: Utilizing a hermeneutical phenomenological qualitative design, we interviewed 47 individuals who experienced a postponement of cardiac or vascular surgery due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Data were analyzed and informed by phenomenological research methods.

Results: Patients in our study described 3 key issues around their postponement of elective surgery. Patients described robust narratives about the meanings of their elective surgeries as the chance to "return to normal" and alleviate symptoms that impacted everyday life. Second, because of the meanings most of our patients ascribed to their surgeries, postponement often took a toll on how patients managed physical health and emotional well-being. Finally, paradoxically, many patients in our study were demonstrative that they would "rather die from a heart attack" than be exposed to the coronavirus.

Conclusions: We identified several components of the patient experience, encompassing quality of life and other desired benefits of surgery, the risks of COVID, and difficulty reconciling the 2. Our study provides significant qualitative evidence to inform providers of important considerations when rescheduling the backlog of patients. The emotional and psychological distress that patients experienced due to postponement may also require additional considerations in postoperative recovery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MLR.0000000000001503DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8132560PMC
April 2021

Balancing Watching vs Waiting During Imaging Surveillance of Small Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms.

JAMA Surg 2021 04;156(4):370-371

Section of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, Michigan Medicine, Ann Arbor.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamasurg.2020.7258DOI Listing
April 2021

Using Payment Incentives to Decrease Atherectomy Overutilization.

Ann Vasc Surg 2021 05 21;73:144-146. Epub 2021 Jan 21.

Department of Surgery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI; Center for Healthcare Outcomes and Policy, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2021.01.061DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8187266PMC
May 2021

Evaluation of Neuropathy, Glycemic Control, and Revascularization as Risk Factors for Future Lower Extremity Amputation among Diabetic Patients.

Ann Vasc Surg 2021 May 26;73:254-263. Epub 2020 Nov 26.

Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston Salem, NC.

Background: Diabetes mellitus is a major risk factor for progression to lower extremity amputation (LEA) due to progressive neuropathy and glycemia-induced vasculopathy. In this study, we evaluated risk factors for incident LEA type 2 diabetics during a randomized controlled trial and extended post-trial follow-up.

Methods: The Action to Control Cardiovascular Risk in Diabetes trial randomized 10,251 type 2 diabetics to intensive glycemic control (Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) target <6.0%) versus standard glycemic control (HbA1c target 7.0-7.9%). Using backward elimination logistic regression models, we examined relationships between neuropathy using the Michigan Neuropathy Screening Instrument (MNSI) and glycemic control and incident LEA during the clinical trial and subsequent follow-up.

Results: 9,746 patients were followed for a mean of 7.9 +/-3.1 (median 8.9) years after randomization. Ninety-eight (1%) participants underwent an incident LEA during the trial or post-trial follow-up period. Baseline demographics and traditional risk factors were examined by incident amputation status. Multivariable models revealed that abnormal 10 gm filament test (HR 4.50, 95% CI 2.92-6.95, P < 0.0001), presence of ulceration (HR 4.22, 95% CI 1.65-10.8, P = 0.0004), abnormal appearance on foot examination (HR 4.75, 95% CI 2.30-9.83, P < 0.0001), and mean postrandomization HbA1c (HR 1.65, 95% CI 1.35-2.00, P < 0.0001) were strongly predictive of LEA when accounting for other common risk factors for amputation.

Conclusions: In this post hoc analysis of a large randomized controlled population of diabetic patients, we found that components of the MNSI score including presence of ulceration, abnormal appearance of the foot, and 10 gm filament monofilament scoring were strongly predictive of LEA. This adds a valuable clinical tool in the risk stratification of diabetic patients for LEA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2020.10.022DOI Listing
May 2021

Developing Strategies for Targeted Improvement of Perioperative Education for Postbariatric Surgery Body-Contouring Patients.

Ann Plast Surg 2021 04;86(4):463-468

From the Sections of Plastic Surgery.

Background: The quality of perioperative patient education impacts surgical outcomes, patient experiences, and resources needed to address patient concerns and unplanned visits. We examined patient inquiries and education materials to assess the quality of perioperative education and identify areas of targeted improvement for postbariatric surgery body-contouring procedures.

Methods: We examined 100 consecutive postbariatric procedures at an academic center. Themes of patient-generated calls, e-mails, and electronic medical record portal messages during the perioperative period were identified via qualitative analysis. Understandability and actionability of perioperative educational resources were assessed using the Patient Education Materials Assessment Tool (PEMAT).

Results: Among 212 communications identified, 167 (79%) were postoperative. Common themes were concerns regarding the surgical site (38%), medications (10%), and activity restrictions (10%). One hundred thirty inquiries were resolved through patient re-education (57%), but 36 (16%) required in-person evaluation including 4 unplanned emergency department visits and 3 readmissions for surgical-site concerns. The PEMAT scores for institutional materials were fair for understandability (69%) and actionability (60%). American Society of Plastic Surgeons materials were more understandable (84%) but less actionable (40%).

Conclusions: Patient queries can be leveraged as a source of qualitative data to identify gaps in perioperative education. High-yield topics, such as education regarding the surgical site and medications, can be targeted for quality improvement through better communication and potentially reduce the number of unnecessary visits. Using the PEMAT, we also identified how directly the education materials can be revised. Improving perioperative education can promote mutual understanding between patients and surgeons, better outcomes, and efficient resource utilization.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/SAP.0000000000002471DOI Listing
April 2021

Outpatient grip strength measurement predicts survival, perioperative adverse events, and nonhome discharge among patients with vascular disease.

J Vasc Surg 2021 01 1;73(1):250-257. Epub 2020 May 1.

Section of Vascular Surgery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich. Electronic address:

Objectives: Frailty is associated with adverse outcomes among patients with vascular disease. Grip strength measurement is a comparatively simple, quick, and inexpensive screening test for weakness (a component of frailty) that is potentially applicable to clinical practice. We hypothesized that grip strength and categorical weakness are associated with clinical outcomes among patients with vascular disease. To test this hypothesis, we conducted a longitudinal cohort study evaluating associations between grip strength measured during outpatient clinic visits for vascular disease and clinical outcomes, including survival and perioperative outcomes.

Methods: Adult patients recruited from outpatient vascular surgery and/or vascular medicine clinics underwent dominant hand grip strength measurement using a hand dynamometer. Participants were categorized as weak based on grip strength, sex, and body mass index. Multivariable logistic models were used to evaluate perioperative outcomes. Mortality was evaluated using Cox proportional hazards models adjusted for sex, age, and operative intervention during follow-up.

Results: We enrolled 321 participants. The mean patients age was 69.0 ± 9.4 years, and 33% were women. Mean grip strength was 32.0 ± 12.1 kg, and 92 participants (29%) were categorized as weak. The median follow-up was 24.0 months. Adverse perioperative events occurred in 32 of 84 patients undergoing procedures. Grip strength was associated with decreased risk of perioperative adverse events (hazard ratio [HR], 0.41 per 12.7 kg increase; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.20-0.85; P = .0171) in a model adjusted for open versus endovascular procedure (HR, 12.75 for open; 95% CI, 2.54-63.90; P = .0020) and sex (HR, 3.05 for male; 95% CI, 0.75-12.4; P = .120). Grip strength was also associated with a lower risk of nonhome discharge (HR, 0.34 per 12.7 kg increase; 95% CI, 0.14-0.82; P = .016) adjusted for sex (HR, 2.14 for male; 95% CI, 0.48-9.50; P = .31) and open versus endovascular procedure (HR, 10.36 for open; 95% CI, 1.20-89.47; P = .034). No associations between grip strength and length of stay were observed. Mortality occurred in 48 participants (14.9%) during follow-up. Grip strength was inversely associated with mortality (HR, 0.46 per 12.5 kg increase; 95% CI, 0.29-0.73; P = .0009) in a model adjusted for sex (HR, 5.08 for male; 95% CI, 2.1-12.3; P = .0003), age (HR, 1.04 per year; 95% CI, 1.01-1.08), and operative intervention during follow-up (HR, 1.23; 95% CI, 0.71-2.52). Categorical weakness was also associated with mortality (HR, 1.81 vs nonfrail; P = .048) in a model adjusted for age (HR, 1.06 per year; P = .002) and surgical intervention (HR, 1.36; 95% CI, 1.02-0.09; P = .331).

Conclusions: Grip strength is associated with all-cause mortality, perioperative adverse events, and nonhome discharge among patients with vascular disease. These observations support the usefulness of grip strength as a simple and inexpensive risk screening tool for patients with vascular disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jvs.2020.03.060DOI Listing
January 2021

Industry compensation and self-reported financial conflicts of interest among authors of highly cited peripheral artery disease studies.

J Vasc Surg 2020 08 21;72(2):673-684. Epub 2020 Jan 21.

Department of Surgery, Section of Vascular Surgery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich; Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich; Center for Health Outcomes and Policy, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich. Electronic address:

Objective: Industry compensation to authors may influence the interpretation of study results. Scientific journals often require author disclosure of a relevant financial conflict of interest (FCOI) but seldom quantify compensation and leave reporting up to the author's discretion. Professional and public concerns related to potential bias introduced into medical research by FCOI have arisen, especially when physician compensation from manufacturers is not disclosed. Little is known, however, about the prevalence of industry compensation to authors of related publications, payment amounts, or how this information compares with self-reported FCOI. The objective of this study was to compare industry compensation and disclosed FCOI among highly referenced publications related to treatment of peripheral artery disease, a disease that affects approximately 8.5 million Americans and is often treated with medications and devices.

Methods: "Peripheral artery disease" was used as a Web of Science search term to identify publications from 2013 to 2016, excluding review articles, conference proceedings, book chapters, abstract publications, and non-English language publications. The top 99 most cited publications were abstracted for self-reported FCOI by author. Industry compensation to authors was queried using a ProPublica Dollars for Docs custom data set based on Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Open Payments data. Providers practicing in the United States in any of the following specialties were included: cardiology, cardiothoracic surgery, vascular and interventional radiology, or vascular surgery. Payment transactions were matched to physician authors on the basis of provider name, specialty, and geographic location. Statistical analysis included descriptive statistics and categorical tests. Descriptive statistics are reported as frequency (percentage) or median (interquartile range).

Results: Among 1008 vascular specialist authors identified, 218 (22%) self-reported FCOI. Fifty-six physician authors had compensation reported to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services by industry during the study period. Among those identified as recipients of industry compensation, 28 (50%) self-reported FCOI. Industry payments to the 56 authors totaled $11,139,987, with a median total payment of $18,827 (interquartile range, $152,084) per author. Food and beverage was the most frequently identified nature of payment (n = 8981 [74%]), promotional speaking involved the largest total amount of payments ($3,256,431), and royalty or license was the highest median payment ($51,431 [$72,215]). Physicians reporting FCOI received a total of $9,435,340 during the study period vs $1,706,647 for those who did not report any FCOI. Median total payments were higher among authors reporting FCOI vs not ($81,224 [$324,171] vs $9494 [$43,448]; P < .001).

Conclusions: Nondisclosed author compensation from industry is relatively uncommon among highly cited peripheral artery disease research studies but may be associated with substantial payments. These results suggest that self-reported FCOI does not provide a comprehensive overview of industry compensation. Reporting all payments rather than only those deemed relevant by the author might provide a more complete and transparent report of potential FCOI, allowing independent assessment of relevance in interpreting study findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jvs.2019.09.053DOI Listing
August 2020

The Effects of Case Timing and Care Team Composition on Hospital Operating Room Costs for Endovascular Procedures.

Ann Vasc Surg 2019 Nov 26;61:100-106. Epub 2019 Jul 26.

Department of Vascular Surgery, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC. Electronic address:

Background: The contemporary healthcare environment is complex with mounting pressures to perform greater procedural volumes with less support staff to minimize costs and maximize efficiency. This report details an analysis of routine endovascular procedures performed with dedicated vascular support staff during daytime hours compared to similar cases performed after hours with general operating room staff.

Methods: All lower extremity endovascular cases over a 37-month period were identified using Current Procedural Terminology codes from a query of our institutional database. Emergent/urgent cases and cases with associated open surgical procedures were excluded. Cases were divided according to the time of day and available clinical support structure according to procedure start time: specialty-specific daytime (SS) and general staff after hours for all others (AH). The resulting case list was examined by case type according to SS or AH designation and case types occurring disproportionately during either time frame were excluded to create a homogenous group of cases. Demographics, case specifics, and cost data were then obtained from the electronic health record and our enterprise cost data warehouse. Multivariable mixed linear modeling was used to examine component costs (i.e., anesthesia, supplies, etc.) and total costs controlling for a number of factors that could affect cost.

Results: Two hundred fifty-two routine endovascular-only procedures were examined in 232 patients (190 SS, 42 AH). No significant differences in procedure specifics were observed between the groups [number and location of access site(s), indication for procedure, type and number of interventions, etc.]. Multivariable analyses controlled for factors affecting costs. Costs associated with anesthesia (cost ratio 1.90, P = 0.001), operating room time costs (cost ratio 1.29, P = 0.03), and post anesthesia recovery (cost ratio 1.23, P = 0.004) were all significantly increased in AH cases compared to SS cases. The average total hospital cost for routine endovascular cases that performed AH was $8,095 compared to $5,636 for SS cases (cost ratio 1.44, P = 0.008).

Conclusions: Performance of routine endovascular cases was associated with significantly less cost to the hospital system when performed by SS teams during regular hospital hours with a ∼30% increase in total cost associated with AH cases. In the current healthcare environment, investments in SS teams and process improvements are likely to be cost effective.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2019.04.034DOI Listing
November 2019

Development, Launch, and Evaluation of an Open-Access Vascular Surgery Handbook through House Officer Curriculum Crowdsourcing.

Ann Vasc Surg 2019 Jul 10;58:309-316. Epub 2019 Feb 10.

Section of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, Michigan Medicine, Ann Arbor, MI.

Background: Free digital platforms are smartphone-compatible and permit self-directed curriculum development based on learners' interests and educational needs. We developed a free mobile vascular surgery handbook initiated, authored, and edited by surgical house officers and surveyed on the content and users.

Methods: Using a free digital platform, house officers developed a vascular surgery handbook. Initiated by a single user for conference preparation and clinical care, the use expanded through sharing among residents. The handbook was then deployed at a second medical center, with free access granted to users after completing a survey. Handbook and content use were evaluated based on user ratings ≥4 on a Likert scale from 1 to 5, where 1 = "strongly disagree" and 5 = "completely agree." Domains assessed included handbook ease of use, content, and relevance to a variety of learning environments and goals (e.g., preparation for the operating room, rounds, clinic, teaching conferences, and examinations). Analytic methods included qualitative analysis, graphical evaluation, and categorical tests.

Results: The handbook is organized into sections, with each consisting of multiple pages and/or posts related to the section topic. Sections with the most content included lower extremity arterial disease, endovascular aneurysm repair/thoracic endovascular aortic repair, venous disease, anticoagulation, and anatomy/exposures. Fifty-four users participated in the evaluation phase, including different types of surgical residents (35%), medical students (30%), and anesthesia residents (22%). Sixty-nine percent of participants were in their position for <2 years. The average age was 29.1 years, and 57% were women. Preferred learning styles among users at the time of enrollment primarily included question banks (52%), followed by slide-based lectures (15%) and "chalk talk" lectures (13%). Of the users who participated in the presurvey, 43 users participated in the postsurvey with a general agreement on the handbook being an easy-to-use resource that was useful for gaining overall knowledge and contained accurate information. Users generally agreed they would recommend the handbook to a colleague.

Conclusions: References customized to user needs can be developed through crowdsourcing and published with free digital resources. These approaches allow mobile access to useful information during conferences and clinical care. House officers' self-perceived educational needs can be targeted for tailored educational initiatives.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2018.11.004DOI Listing
July 2019

Scope, Themes, and Medical Accuracy of eHealth Peripheral Artery Disease Community Forums.

Ann Vasc Surg 2019 Jan 26;54:92-102. Epub 2018 Sep 26.

Department of Surgery, Section of Vascular Surgery, University of Michigan School of Medicine, Ann Arbor, MI; Department of Learning Health Sciences, University of Michigan School of Medicine, Ann Arbor, MI. Electronic address:

Background: The availability of electronic health (eHealth) information and disease-related community forums has grown over the last decade. Although patients and families frequently use these resources, their content has not been characterized in terms users, content, or reliability of information. eHealth communities therefore represent a potentially valuable but uncharted source of information about key patient issues, communication terminology, and unmet needs. We hypothesized that eHealth forums would contain terminology, themes, and advice inconsistent with resources from medical providers and references. To test this hypothesis, we performed a qualitative analysis of posts and responses from an open-access peripheral artery disease (PAD) eHealth community forum to characterize the discussion, participants, and the information being exchanged.

Methods: Posts were collected from an online PAD Medical Support Community forum (MedHelp), which is open access, does not require participants to identify themselves, and is based in the United States. Posts were selected from threads in which the main topic was PAD, including diagnosis, symptoms, and treatment. Original posts and related responses were analyzed for thematic content, common vernacular, and self-reported characteristics of the participants using a qualitative analysis software program. Disease-specific comments and advice were evaluated for congruence with contemporary PAD treatment guidelines.

Results: A total of 103 posts were collected and analyzed, including 40 original posts and 63 responses. Forty-five percent of the original posts and 19% of the responses were authored by participants who self-identified as patients with PAD. The remaining posts were authored by people with undeclared relationships to patients with PAD, followed by children, spouses, and other relatives. The most common themes among original posts included PAD diagnosis (and differential) (25%), treatment (23%), epidemiology and pathophysiology (21%), disease symptoms and impacts on activities of daily living (15%), and health-care provider recommendations (13%). Themes of responses included medical advice (40.5%), personal experiences with PAD (32.8%), and social support (12.6%). Negative attitudes were identified in 10 of 18 (55.6%) posts related to experiences with health-care providers. Of all medical advice, 15.1% was inconsistent with clinical treatment guidelines.

Conclusion: eHealth communities are a rich source of information related to the experiences of patients with PAD, their treatment preferences, questions they consider important, and terminology that they use. This information can be used to understand unmet patient needs, develop educational resources, and improve communication.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2018.09.004DOI Listing
January 2019

Grip strength measurement for frailty assessment in patients with vascular disease and associations with comorbidity, cardiac risk, and sarcopenia.

J Vasc Surg 2018 05 21;67(5):1512-1520. Epub 2017 Dec 21.

Department of Surgery, Section of Vascular Surgery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich. Electronic address:

Objective: Frailty is associated with adverse events, length of stay, and nonhome discharge after vascular surgery. Frailty measures based on walking-based tests may be impractical or invalid for patients with walking impairment from symptoms or sequelae of vascular disease. We hypothesized that grip strength is associated with frailty, comorbidity, and cardiac risk among patients with vascular disease.

Methods: Dominant hand grip strength was measured during ambulatory clinic visits among patients with vascular disease (abdominal aortic aneurysm [AAA], carotid stenosis, and peripheral artery disease [PAD]). Frailty prevalence was defined on the basis of the 20th percentile of community-dwelling population estimates adjusted for age, gender, and body mass index. Associations between grip strength, Charlson Comorbidity Index (CCI), Revised Cardiac Risk Index (RCRI), and sarcopenia (based on total psoas area for patients with cross-sectional abdominal imaging) were evaluated using linear and logistic regression.

Results: Grip strength was measured in 311 participants; all had sufficient data for CCI calculation, 217 (69.8%) had sufficient data for RCRI, and 88 (28.3%) had cross-sectional imaging permitting psoas measurement. Eighty-six participants (27.7%) were categorized as frail on the basis of grip strength. Frailty was associated with CCI (odds ratio, 1.86; 95% confidence interval, 1.34-2.57; P = .0002) in the multivariable model. Frail participants also had a higher average number of RCRI components vs nonfrail patients (mean ± standard deviation, 1.8 ± 0.8 for frail vs 1.5 ± 0.7 for nonfrail; P = .018); frailty was also associated with RCRI in the adjusted multivariable model (odds ratio, 1.75; 95% confidence interval, 1.16-2.64; P = .008). Total psoas area was lower among patients categorized as frail vs nonfrail on the basis of grip strength (21.0 ± 6.6 vs 25.4 ± 7.4; P = .010). Each 10 cm increase in psoas area was associated with a 5.7 kg increase in grip strength in a multivariable model adjusting for age and gender (P < .0001). Adjusted least squares mean psoas diameter estimates were 25.5 ± 1.1 cm for participants with AAA, 26.7 ± 2.0 cm for participants with carotid stenosis, and 22.7 ± 0.8 cm for participants with PAD (P = .053 for PAD vs AAA; P = .057 for PAD vs carotid stenosis; and P = .564 for AAA vs carotid stenosis).

Conclusions: Grip strength is useful for identifying frailty among patients with vascular disease. Frail status based on grip strength is associated with comorbidity, cardiac risk, and sarcopenia in this population. These findings suggest that grip strength may have utility as a simple and inexpensive risk screening tool that is easily implemented in ambulatory clinics, avoids the need for imaging, and overcomes possible limitations of walking-based measures. Lower mean psoas diameters among patients with PAD vs other diagnoses may warrant consideration of specific approaches to morphomic analysis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jvs.2017.08.078DOI Listing
May 2018

Superior Lower Extremity Vein Graft Bypass Patency among Married Patients with Peripheral Artery Disease.

Ann Vasc Surg 2017 Oct 4;44:48-53. Epub 2017 May 4.

Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston Salem, NC. Electronic address:

Background: Outcome disparities associated with lower extremity bypass (LEB) for peripheral artery disease (PAD) have been identified but are poorly understood. Marital status may affect outcomes through factors related to health risk behaviors, adherence, and access to care but has not been characterized as a predictor of surgical outcomes and is often omitted from administrative data sets. We evaluated associations between marital status and vein graft patency following LEB using multivariable models adjusting for established risk factors.

Methods: Consecutive patients undergoing autogenous LEB for PAD were identified and analyzed. Survival analysis and Cox proportional hazards models were used to evaluate patency stratified by marital status (married versus single, divorced, or widow[er]) adjusting for demographic, comorbidity, and anatomic factors in multivariable models.

Results: Seventy-three participants who underwent 79 autogenous vein LEB had complete data and were analyzed. Forty-three patients (58.9%) were married, and 30 (41.1%) were unmarried. Compared with unmarried patients, married patients were older at the time of their bypass procedure (67.3 ± 10.8 years vs. 62.2 ± 10.6 years; P = 0.05). Married patients also had a lower prevalence of female gender (11.6% vs. 33.3%; P = 0.02). Diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and smoking were common among both married and unmarried patients. Minimum great saphenous vein conduit diameters were larger in married versus unmarried patients (2.82 ± 0.57 mm vs. 2.52 ± 0.65 mm; P = 0.04). Twenty-four-month primary patency was 66% for married versus 38% for unmarried patients. In a multivariable proportional hazards model adjusting for proximal and distal graft inflow/outflow, medications, gender, age, race, smoking, diabetes, and minimum vein graft diameter, married status was associated with superior primary patency (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.33; 95% confidence limits [0.11, 0.99]; P = 0.05); other predictive covariates included preoperative antiplatelet therapy (HR = 0.27; 95% confidence limits [0.10, 0.74]; P = 0.01) and diabetes (HR = 2.56; 95% confidence limits [0.93-7.04]; P = 0.07).

Conclusions: Marital status is associated with vein graft patency following LEB. Further investigation into the mechanistic explanation for improved patency among married patients may provide insight into social or behavioral factors influencing other disparities associated with LEB outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2017.01.026DOI Listing
October 2017

Cumulative Number of Treatment Interventions Predicts Health-Related Quality of Life in Patients with Critical Limb Ischemia.

Ann Vasc Surg 2017 Oct 5;44:41-47. Epub 2017 May 5.

Division of Public Health Sciences, Department of Biostatistical Sciences, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC; Division of Public Health Sciences, Department of Social Sciences and Health Policy, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC.

Background: Health-related quality of life (QOL) is usually assessed after a defined interval following a single intervention, but critical limb ischemia (CLI) is a chronic condition where multiple interventions are often required over a patient's lifetime. We hypothesized that the impact of CLI treatment interventions on QOL is diminished in the setting of multiple previous interventions. To test this hypothesis, we performed a cross-sectional study evaluating associations between cumulative number of previous peripheral artery disease (PAD) treatment interventions and QOL adjusting for both comorbidity and disease severity.

Methods: Participants with CLI (abnormal ankle brachial index [ABI] plus rest pain and/or tissue loss) were enrolled in a cross-sectional study and completed a disease-specific QOL assessment, (the Vascular Quality of Life Questionnaire-6 [VascuQol-6]). Minimum ABI was used to assess disease severity, and comorbidity was evaluated based on Charlson Comorbidity Index. Cumulative number of PAD treatment interventions was defined based on the lifelong total for both legs. QOL associations were evaluated using a multivariable linear regression model adjusted for age and gender.

Results: Thirty-two patients with CLI participated. Mean age was 63 ± 10 years, 72% were men, and 63% were white; mean ABI was 0.6 ± 0.2. Mean VQ-6 score was 11.6 ± 4.2, and QOL was lower in patients with more previous interventions. Multivariable models demonstrated that an increasing number of previous treatment interventions negatively impacted QOL (P = 0.047), whereas positive associations were identified for female gender (P = 0.006) and ABI (P = 0.006). No association between comorbidity and QOL was identified.

Conclusions: Vascular-specific factors appear to be key determinants of QOL among patients with CLI, whereas comorbidity appears less important. Strategies focused on definitive and durable revascularization may reduce cumulative interventions and potentially maximize QOL for patients with CLI.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2017.01.029DOI Listing
October 2017

2016 AHA/ACC Guideline on the Management of Patients With Lower Extremity Peripheral Artery Disease: A Report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Clinical Practice Guidelines.

Circulation 2017 03 13;135(12):e726-e779. Epub 2016 Nov 13.

Writing committee members are required to recuse themselves from voting on sections to which their specific relationships with industry and other entities may apply; see Appendix 1 for recusal information. Functioning as the lay volunteer/patient representative. ACC/AHA Representative. Vascular and Endovascular Surgery Society Representative. Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions Representative. ACC/AHA Task Force on Clinical Practice Guidelines Liaison. Inter-Society Consensus for the Management of Peripheral Arterial Disease Representative. Society for Vascular Medicine Representative. Society of Interventional Radiology Representative. Society for Clinical Vascular Surgery Representative. Society for Vascular Surgery Representative. American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation Representative. Society for Vascular Nursing Representative.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIR.0000000000000471DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5477786PMC
March 2017

2016 AHA/ACC Guideline on the Management of Patients With Lower Extremity Peripheral Artery Disease: Executive Summary: A Report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Clinical Practice Guidelines.

Circulation 2017 03 13;135(12):e686-e725. Epub 2016 Nov 13.

Writing committee members are required to recuse themselves from voting on sections to which their specific relationships with industry and other entities may apply; see Appendix 1 for recusal information. Functioning as the lay volunteer/patient representative. ACC/AHA Representative. Vascular and Endovascular Surgery Society Representative. Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions Representative. ACC/AHA Task Force on Clinical Practice Guidelines Liaison. Inter-Society Consensus for the Management of Peripheral Arterial Disease Representative. Society for Vascular Medicine Representative. Society of Interventional Radiology Representative. Society for Clinical Vascular Surgery Representative. Society for Vascular Surgery Representative. American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation Representative. Society for Vascular Nursing Representative.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIR.0000000000000470DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5479414PMC
March 2017

Gender-specific Differences in Great Saphenous Vein Conduit. A Link to Lower Extremity Bypass Outcomes Disparities?

Ann Vasc Surg 2017 Jan 22;38:36-41. Epub 2016 Sep 22.

Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC. Electronic address:

Background: Inferior lower extremity bypass (LEB) outcomes have been reported among women with peripheral arterial disease (PAD), but the mechanisms responsible for this disparity are unknown. Great saphenous vein (GSV) is considered the conduit of choice for LEB; GSV diameter is associated with graft patency and therefore is often used as a criterion for suitability for use as bypass conduit. We hypothesized that gender-based differences in GSV may contribute to LEB outcomes disparities. To explore this hypothesis, we performed a gender-based analysis of GSV anatomic characteristics among patients with PAD who were studied with duplex ultrasound vein mapping during evaluation for LEB.

Methods: Consecutive patients undergoing ultrasound vein mapping for planned LEB were analyzed. Minimum above- and below-knee GSV diameters were obtained in addition to demographic, procedural, and clinical data. Associations between gender and GSV diameter were evaluated using multivariate mixed models adjusting for anatomic location and within-patient correlation.

Results: One hundred five patients were analyzed. Mean patient age was 65 ± 11 years, 25% were women, and 78% were white. Mixed model estimates of minimum GSV diameters were 3.14 ± 0.09 mm above knee and 2.74 ± 0.09 below knee for men versus 3.23 ± 0.14 above-knee and 2.49 ± 0.14 below knee for women. A gender-based interaction between anatomic location and GSV diameter was identified, with women having a greater difference between above- and below-knee GSV diameters (or taper; mean difference of 0.73 ± 0.12 vs. 0.41 ± 0.17 mm; P = 0.017).

Conclusions: GSV taper (difference between above- and below-knee diameters) is greater in women and may contribute to inferior patency after LEB with vein conduit, particularly for below-knee target vessels. Further research is necessary to evaluate specific hemodynamic effects of graft taper and links with other clinical endpoints. In addition to minimum diameter, vein graft taper may warrant consideration when planning LEB.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2016.09.003DOI Listing
January 2017

Decisive Steps Toward Patient-Reported Outcomes for Claudication-Tread Lightly or Full Steam Ahead?

JAMA Surg 2016 10 19;151(10):e162084. Epub 2016 Oct 19.

currently with the Division of Vascular Surgery, Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest University, Winston Salem, North Carolina.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamasurg.2016.2084DOI Listing
October 2016

Endovascular Treatment of Chronic Mesenteric Ischemia in the Setting of Occlusive Superior Mesenteric Artery Lesions.

Ann Vasc Surg 2017 Jan 28;38:29-35. Epub 2016 Aug 28.

Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC.

Background: Endovascular intervention is considered the first-line treatment for chronic mesenteric ischemia (CMI) when feasible. Two-vessel revascularization is most definitive when celiac (CA) and superior mesenteric arteries (SMA) are diseased, but single-vessel intervention may be performed in patients with 2-vessel disease due to anatomic/technical factors. We evaluated anatomic predictors of clinical outcomes associated with endovascular treatment of CMI among patients with occlusive SMA lesions.

Methods: Patients with CMI treated with endovascular revascularization over 10 years were identified. Patients with SMA occlusions were selected for analysis. Between-group comparisons based on inclusion of an SMA revascularization were evaluated using t-test and chi-squared test. Freedom from symptomatic recurrence or repeat intervention was analyzed using proportional hazards regression.

Results: Fifty-four patients with CMI were analyzed. Sixteen (29.6%) patients had CA-only intervention, and 38 (70.4%) patients had SMA revascularization with or without CA intervention. No significant differences in demographics or comorbidity were identified between groups. In the CA-only intervention group, 8 of the 16 (50%) patients developed symptomatic recurrence compared with 8 of the 31 (21.1%) patients whose intervention included the SMA. Patients treated without SMA intervention also had decreased freedom from both symptomatic recurrence (hazard ratio [HR] 3.2, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.2-8.6, P = 0.016) and repeat intervention (HR 5.5, 95% CI 1.8-16.3, P = 0.001).

Conclusions: Among patients with CMI and occlusive SMA lesions, SMA revascularization appears to be the key determinant for symptomatic outcomes and repeat intervention. Patient counseling should include potential future need for surgical revascularization if endovascular SMA treatment cannot be accomplished.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2016.08.009DOI Listing
January 2017

Perceptions of Integrated Vascular Surgery Fellowship Graduates among Community Vascular Surgeons.

Ann Vasc Surg 2016 Jan 11;30:118-22.e1-2. Epub 2015 Nov 11.

Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston Salem, NC.

Background: Vascular training includes both integrated residency ("0+5") and postresidency fellowship ("5+2") programs. The impact of training models on attitudes toward graduates as prospective hires is incompletely understood, and existing studies have primarily surveyed surgeons from academic centers. We surveyed surgeons who were in active clinical practice but not affiliated with a medical school or training program to compare perceptions of integrated versus postgraduate programs.

Methods: Vascular surgeons not affiliated with a university-based practice were identified from membership rosters of one regional and one national specialty society and e-mailed an anonymous survey. The survey evaluated respondents' training, practice distribution, general surgery responsibilities, hiring practices, and perception of the integrated and postgraduate trained vascular surgeons. Agreement among specific responses was evaluated using McNemar's test.

Results: The survey was sent to 406 surgeons with 71 (17.5%) responding. A total of 42% of respondents indicated that half or more of their cases consisted of open procedures and 10% reported general surgery coverage as part of their practice. More respondents indicated that they consider postgraduate trained surgeons very mature (41% vs. 7%, P < 0.0001) and better prepared for open cases (89% vs. 28%, P < 0.0001), as well as endovascular cases (96% vs. 87%, P = 0.0339). Overall 84% stated that they would interview an integrated program graduate, although only 72% indicated that they would hire one. Overall 16.9% identified ability to cover general surgery as either very important or somewhat important characteristic for a potential hire.

Conclusions: Perceptions of 5+2 graduates as more mature and better prepared for opens surgical cases may influence hiring practices. This suggests that attitudes toward integrated versus 5+2 trained surgeons may differ between academic and community vascular surgeons. Further research is needed to assess whether these differences are related to actual differences in graduate skills, familiarity with integrated graduates, or other factors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2015.10.006DOI Listing
January 2016

Exploring patient involvement in decision making for vascular procedures.

J Vasc Surg 2015 Oct 2;62(4):1032-1039.e2. Epub 2015 Jul 2.

Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC.

Background: Developing patient-centered approaches to health care requires increased engagement of patients in their own care, including treatment decisions. Current levels of patient involvement in treatment choices have not been quantified, however, and whether patients desire greater decision-making responsibility is unknown. We conducted a prospective study to explore patients' desired vs experienced roles in treatment decisions, characterize perceptions of treatment outcomes, and identify important sources of information.

Methods: Patients undergoing elective vascular procedures completed a survey consisting of multiple choice, Likert scale, and open-ended questions. Statistics are displayed as mean ± standard deviation or count (%). Differences among procedure categories were evaluated using χ(2) or the Fisher exact test at P < .05 based on responses scored 1 to 2, indicating importance, agreement, or satisfaction based on a 1 to 5 Likert scale where 1 = "very important," "strongly agree" or "very satisfied".

Results: Of 101 patients who were contacted, 81 participated. Procedure categories included abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) repair in 20, arteriovenous (AV) hemodialysis access in 21, carotid endarterectomy (CEA) in 20, and intervention for lower extremity peripheral arterial disease (PAD) in 20. Participants preferred discussion of all treatments being considered vs only the provider's recommended treatment (90% vs 56%) and choosing together with the provider vs having the provider choose for them (93% vs 62%). Although participants indicated adequate information to ask questions without feeling overwhelmed, only 77% agreed that they had the opportunity to ask questions and only 54% indicated that they were offered a choice. Thirty-seven participants (46%) considered their first treatment was successful, 38% considered a subsequent treatment was successful, and 16% considered none of their treatments were successful. Participants undergoing PAD and AV access procedures most often felt confused or overwhelmed (25% and 24%, respectively, vs 0% for AAA and CEA; P < .01). Patients with PAD had adequate information least often (70% vs 85% for AAA, 100% for AV access, and 95% for CEA; P = .01), had the lowest satisfaction with understanding of their diagnosis (65% vs 95% for AAA, 100% for AV access, and 95% for CEA; P < .01), and most often considered none of their treatments successful (35% vs 0% for AAA, 15% for AV access, and 15% for CEA; P = .02). Providers were identified as the most important information source.

Conclusions: Patients have variable levels of participation in decision making related to vascular procedures and often consider their treatments unsuccessful. Although providers are important sources of information, patients still prefer to discuss all options being considered and contribute to shared decision making.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jvs.2015.04.443DOI Listing
October 2015

Increased prevalence of preeclampsia among women undergoing procedural intervention for renal artery fibromuscular dysplasia.

Ann Vasc Surg 2015 Aug 22;29(6):1105-10. Epub 2015 May 22.

Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC; Hypertension & Vascular Disease Research Center, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC. Electronic address:

Background: Renal artery fibromuscular dysplasia (RA-FMD) has a higher prevalence among women and a presumed hormonal etiology. Although preeclampsia has a clinical presentation similar to symptomatic RA-FMD and occurs exclusively in women, associations between these 2 diseases have not been characterized. To explore epidemiologic associations between RA-FMD and preeclampsia, we administered a validated screening instrument for preeclampsia to a cohort of women with a history of pregnancy who had previously been treated with procedural intervention for symptomatic RA stenosis.

Methods: Women with a history of pregnancy who had previously undergone procedural intervention (including angioplasty and/or bypass) for symptomatic RA stenosis were identified from a prospectively maintained operative registry and screened for remote history of preeclampsia using a validated survey instrument. Univariable associations between RA-FMD and preeclampsia among participants with a history of pregnancy were evaluated using t-tests for continuous factors and chi-squared tests for dichotomous factors. Multivariable associations were evaluated using logistic regression models.

Results: A total of 144 women were identified who met the study inclusion criteria, including 94 with atherosclerotic RA stenosis and 50 with RA-FMD. Sixty-nine patients were contacted, 59 consented to participate, and 52 had a history of pregnancy (and therefore were at risk for preeclampsia). Participants completed the survey instrument at a mean of 7.1 ± 3.1 vs. 6.9 ± 3.6 years after RA procedural intervention, respectively. Survey responses indicated a history of preeclampsia in 19/52 (36.5%) of participants overall, including 14/27 (51.9%) with RA-FMD versus 5/20 (20.0%) with RA atherosclerosis (P = 0.02). Preeclampsia remained associated with FMD in a multivariable model adjusting for smoking status, age at time of surgery, and estimated glomerular filtration rate (odds ratio [OR] 9.51, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.49-60.6, P = 0.017); age at the time of surgery (OR 2.78, 95% CI 1.04-7.42, P = 0.041) and estimated glomerular filtration rate (OR 3.31, 95% CI 1.29-8.52, P = 0.013) were also associated with FMD in the multivariable model.

Conclusions: Women with a history of procedural intervention for symptomatic RA stenosis have an overall prevalence of preeclampsia which greatly exceeds that expected in the general population, and our results suggest that preeclampsia is specifically associated with RA-FMD. Further investigation is needed to characterize the mechanistic relationships between FMD and preeclampsia and may have potential to decrease related cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.avsg.2015.03.037DOI Listing
August 2015

Focusing Quality Improvement Efforts for Hemodialysis Access.

JAMA Surg 2015 Jun;150(6):536-7

Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery and Division of Public Health Sciences, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamasurg.2015.0321DOI Listing
June 2015

Results of the major randomized clinical trials of renal stenting and implications for future treatment strategies.

Semin Vasc Surg 2013 Dec 12;26(4):161-4. Epub 2014 Jun 12.

Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, Winston-Salem, North Carolina 27157. Electronic address:

The management of atherosclerotic renovascular disease remains an area of controversy. This review details the results of major clinical trials and their implications for contemporary treatment recommendations for affected patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1053/j.semvascsurg.2014.06.003DOI Listing
December 2013
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