Buerger’s Disease in Tehran University of Medical Sciences Hospitals: A Fifteen Years Study
Buerger's disease is an occlusive inflammatory disease of the small and medium-sized arteries and accounts for a variable proportion of patients with peripheral vascular disease throughout the world. The aim of this study was to review the records of Buerger's disease patients admitted to surgery wards of our university hospitals. 277 patients with Buerger's disease were surgically treated between 1987 and 2002, in affiliated hospitals of Tehran University of Medical Sciences, in Iran. Two hundred and seventy three (98.6%) of the patients were male, aged 41.5 ± 11 years (mean ± SD); 99.6% of which were smokers with an average of 22.9 pack/years tobacco use. The major complaints included: ischemic ulcers in 203 (73.3%, CI 95%: 0.68-0.77) patients, rest pain in 201 (72.6%, CI 95%: 0.64-0.73), paresthesia in 143 (51.3%, CI 95%: 0.48- 0.58). Vascular bypass, sympathectomy and amputation were performed in 9.7% (CI 95%: 0.08-0.14) and 69.3% (CI 95%: 0.51-0.60) and 59.6% (CI 95%: 0.65-0.73) of the patients, respectively. Lumbar sympathectomy was carried out in 177 (63.9%) patients, while 15 (5.4%) patients underwent thoracic sympathectomy. In our study, afflicted patients were mostly young males, inveterate tobacco smokers. Patients presented frequently with ischemic ulcers or severe rest pain; thrombophlebitis and Raynaud's phenomenon were infrequent. Vascular reconstruction was rarely possible due to distal and segmental involvement; therefore sympathectomy and amputation were inevitable in a large group of patients in this study.
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