Management of upper extremity aneurysms: a systematic review

Salomé Kuntz, Anne Lejay, Yannick Georg, Fabien Thaveau, Nabil Chakfe

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


INTRODUCTION: The aim of this paper is to provide recommendations for diagnosis and management of arterial or venous aneurysms of the upper extremity. EVIDENCE ACQUISITION: A systematic review of the Medline and Cockrane databases was performed from 1988 to 2019 by a combined strategy of MeSh terms. EVIDENCE SYNTHESIS: One-hundred-forty-four publications were identified: 111 addressing arterial aneurysms and 33 addressing venous aneurysms. A total of 162 cases of arterial aneurysms, mostly brachial aneurysms (34.0% of cases) and 40 cases of venous aneurysms, mostly located in the forearm (60.0% of cases) were reported. For both types of aneurysms, most common presentation was the perception of a mass (56.3% for arterial one and 87.5% for venous one), but thromboembolic complication (46.7%), paresthesia (16.5%) or rupture (6.4%) could be observed in the setting of arterial aneurysms, while arm swelling (27.5%), neurological symptoms (12.5%), pulmonary embolism (10.0%) or rupture (2.5%) could occur in the setting of venous aneurysms. DUS was performed as first imaging modality for both settings, followed but CTA and MRA, especially in arterial aneurysms, to evaluate distal emboli and surrounding vasculature. Surgical treatment was mostly based on excision of the aneurysms with revascularization for arterial aneurysms (77.2%) and resection without reconstruction for the venous one (85.0%). Complications occurred in 10.5% of the cases of arterial aneurysms, none occurred after venous aneurysm resection. CONCLUSIONS: Prompt diagnosis and appropriate preoperative imaging are mandatory in order to offer the best treatment modality. Open resection with revascularization seems to be the treatment of choice for arterial aneurysms, although endovascular procedures became more popular. Venous aneurysms require excision without revascularization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-170
Number of pages10
JournalInternational angiology : a journal of the International Union of Angiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020


  • Aneurysm
  • Upper extremity
  • Vascular surgical procedures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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