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Vascular Access

  • To provide vascular access for hemodialysis, blood conduits are constructed of either arteriovenous  fistulas or prosthetic grafts with expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE)

  • Fistulas or grafts are used as needle insertion sites for life sustaining hemodialysis in end stage renal disease patients two to three times per week

Graft Failure

  • In the United States approximately 125,000 hemodialysis patients with ePTFE grafts require an average of 1.6 interventions/graft/year to maintain graft function

 

  • Nearly 50% of the grafts fail at three months post implantation

  • Failure is often the result  of obstructive (stenotic) lesions