Comparison of the resistance to infection of intestinal submucosa arterial autografts versus polytetrafluoroethylene arterial prostheses in a dog model

Stephen F. Badylak, Arthur C. Coffey, Gary C. Lantz, Willis A. Tacker, Leslie A. Geddes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

131 Scopus citations


Purpose: Prosthetic graft infection represents a most challenging complication to the vascular surgeon. Although expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) grafts have an acceptable patency rate, especially in the large-diameter arterial location, bacterial contamination of this material usually requires surgical removal of the graft. Methods: We compared the resistance of large-diameter ePTFE grafts and grafts constructed of small intestinal submucosa (SIS) to deliberate infection with Staphylococcus aureus. Eighteen dogs were divided into two equal groups, and the infrarenal aorta was replaced with either ePTFE or SIS graft material. One hundred million S. aureus organisms were deposited directly on the graft at the time of surgery, and the dogs were observed for 30 days. Results: One dog with an ePTFE graft died of hemorrhage from an anastomosis site at 21 days. Of the remaining eight dogs with ePTFE grafts, four had positive culture results from the removed graft material, and all had histologic evidence for persistent infection. These dogs also had chronic fever, and the average white blood cell count at day 30 was 15,600/mm3. All nine dogs with SIS grafts had patent grafts, were afebrile after the first week, had an average white blood cell count of 11,500/mm3 at 30 days (p value = NS), had negative culture results, and had the histologic appearance of graft remodeling with collagen that was free of active inflammation. Conclusions: We conclude that large-diameter arterial SIS grafts are more resistant to persistent infection with S. aureus than ePTFE grafts in this dog model of deliberate bacterial inoculation. (J VASC SURG 1994;19:465-72.)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)465-472
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of vascular surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1994


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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