AAA Treatment – Cook Stents

Dr. Patrick Neville with Memorial’s Heart and Vascular Center discusses a Cook stent, which is used in the treatment of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA).

Talk about the Cook stent.

One of the types of endographs or covered stent grafts that we use are made by Cook. What’s unique about this particular graft are the suprarenal hooks or barbs. What happens is this graft is constrained or folded into a sheath or catheter. We’re able to get access through the femoral arteries in the groin, most times percutaneously or through a needle stick. And through a wire, we’re able to deliver these devices where we need them to be in the body. We can see based upon some of the radio-opaque markers on this, where it is, and where we want to put it. It’s obviously important because we need absolute accuracy where we place these so that we don’t cover vital blood vessels that we don’t want to cover. We deploy it in the body, build it in the body, and add limbs, which are separate pieces that would then go into these two bottom pieces to provide blood flow to each leg.

What are some of the unique characteristics of the Cook stent?

Some unique characteristics about this graft is its suprarenal fixation. The barbs or hooks actually extend higher above the kidney arteries, so blood flow can still go through them because it’s not covered by the material. This allows the device to be anchored into the aorta. So, the Cook stent is a device that gives you excellent fixation within the aorta because one of the complications of these types of grafts is that over time the grafts can move within the patient as the aorta continues to change and grow throughout our life span.