Surgical treatment of vascular rings: The Mayo Clinic experience

J. A M Van Son, P. R. Julsrud, D. J. Hagler, E. K W Sim, P. C. Pairolero, F. J. Puga, Hartzell V Schaff, G. K. Danielson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

133 Scopus citations


From 1947 through 1992, 37 Mayo Clinic patients underwent operation for the relief of tracheo-esophageal obstruction that resulted from vascular rings and related entities. Of the 37 patients, 18 had a double aortic arch, 11 had a right aortic arch with an aberrant left subclavian artery, 4 had a left aortic arch with an aberrant right subclavian artery, 2 had a pulmonary artery sling, 1 had a right aortic arch with mirror-image branching and a left ligamentum arteriosum, and 1 had a left aortic arch, a right descending aorta, and a right ductus arteriosus. Symptoms consisted of stridor, recurrent respiratory infections, and dysphagia. The anomaly was approached through a left thoracotomy in 31 patients, through a right thoracotomy in 4, and through a median sternotomy in 2. Only one early postoperative death (3%) and no late deaths occurred. At long-term follow-up (maximal duration, 45 years), three patients had residual symptomatic tracheomalacia, one of whom required right middle and lower lobectomy for recurrent pneumonia. Magnetic resonance imaging is the imaging technique of choice for accurate delineation of the vascular and tracheal anatomy. When patients are symptomatic, vascular ring should be repaired. The surgical risk is minimal, and the long-term results are excellent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1056-1063
Number of pages8
JournalMayo Clinic Proceedings
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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