Title

Technical Nuances of Exposing Rat Common Carotid Arteries for Practicing Microsurgical Anastomosis

Document Type

Article

Abstract

Background: Animal models are commonly used in training protocols for microsurgical vascular anastomosis. Rat common carotid arteries (CCAs) are frequently used for this purpose. Much attention has been paid to the technical details of various anastomosis configurations using these arteries. However, technical nuances of exposing rat CCAs have been understudied. The purpose of this study is to describe nuances of technique for safely and efficiently exposing rat CCAs in preparation for a vascular anastomosis. Methods: Bilateral CCAs were exposed and prepared for anastomosis in 10 anesthetized Sprague-Dawley rats through a midline cervical incision. The exposed length of the CCA was measured. Additionally, technical nuances of exposure and surgically relevant anatomic details were recorded. Results: The CCAs were exposed from the sternoclavicular joint to their bifurcation (average length, 19.1 ± 2.8 mm). Tenets important for a safe and efficient exposure of the CCAs included 1) generous subcutaneous dissection to expose the external jugular veins (EJVs), 2) avoiding injury to or compression of the EJVs, 3) superior mobilization of the salivary glands, 4) division of internal jugular veins, 5) opening the carotid sheath at its midlevel and from medial to lateral, and 6) avoiding injury to the vagus nerve or sympathetic trunk. Conclusions: Using the principles introduced in this study, trainees may safely and efficiently expose rat CCAs in preparation for a bypass.

Publication Date

7-1-2018

Publication Title

World Neurosurgery

ISSN

18788750

E-ISSN

18788769

Volume

115

First Page

e305

Last Page

e311

PubMed ID

29673816

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

10.1016/j.wneu.2018.04.041

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