Subcutaneous, video-assisted saphenous vein harvest: Report of the first 30 cases

A. B. Lumsden, F. F. Eaves, J. C. Ofenloch, W. D. Jordan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

112 Scopus citations


Harvest of the saphenous vein is a commonly performed procedure in cardiovascular surgery. The incision required for its removal is the longest used anywhere. In this report, the authors describe a minimally invasive technique for removal of the vein. This has been used in 30 patients undergoing peripheral arterial bypass (n = 27), venovenous bypass (n = 2), and a saphenopopliteal fistula (n = 1). There were three perioperative complications: skin necrosis over tunnel (one), bulla (one), and saphenous vein injury (one). Harvest time averaged 1.25 h. There was minimal postoperative discomfort in the harvest site and minimal scarring. Endoscopic harvest of the saphenous vein differs from most laparoscopic procedures because of its linear course. Consequently, visualization and dissection is coaxial rather than triangulation. This study demonstrates the technical feasibility of vein harvest. Development of appropriate instrumentation for opening the optical cavity and vein manipulation will reduce operative times.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)771-776
Number of pages6
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1996


  • endoscopic
  • minimally invasive
  • saphenous vein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Surgery


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