Robotic-assisted Closed-chest Management of a Fungal-infected Prosthetic Aortic Graft

A Case Report

Ashley T Giammarino; Iam Claire Sarmiento; SJacob Scheinerman; John Winalski; Richard S Lazzaro; Derek R Brinster; Jonathan M Hemli


J Med Case Reports. 2022;16(186) 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Background: Fungal prosthetic graft infections are associated with high mortality, typically requiring aggressive surgical debridement. We present an alternative, minimally invasive approach to address these challenging clinical cases.

Case Presentation: A 76-year-old Caucasian male with prior aortic root and arch replacement presented with localized chest wall tenderness after being hit by a car door. Computed tomography angiogram incidentally identified fluid in the anterior mediastinum, surrounding his ascending aortic graft. Rather than undertaking a high-risk reoperative sternotomy and redo complex aortic reconstruction, we elected to proceed with a robotic-assisted, minimally invasive debridement of the aortic graft, coupled with an omental wrap, entirely within the closed chest. Microbiology was positive for Aspergillus species. The patient made an uncomplicated recovery and was discharged home on antifungal therapy, likely to continue indefinitely.

Conclusions: Infected prosthetic aortic grafts can be successfully managed with debridement and pedicled omental flap coverage via a minimally invasive approach within the closed chest, obviating the morbidity of a complex reoperative open procedure.