Retinal Precapillary Arteriolar Occlusion after Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting Surgery


  • Ilke Bahceci Simsek Ophthalmology Clinic, Istanbul Medicine Hospital, Istanbul
  • Batuhan Ozay Cardiovascular Surgery Clinic, Istanbul Medicine Hospital, Istanbul



Background: The aim of this study is to evaluate the microembolic changes related to occlusions of precapillary arterioles in the retina during coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery using fundus photography, and to examine systemic and operational factors related to occurrent lesions.
Methods: Retinal microvascular damage was assessed by color fundus photography one day before CABG surgery, on postoperative day five, and again three months after surgery. In addition to patients’ demographics, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, chronic renal failure, and hypercholesterolemia (LDL level) were examined. Smoking history was recorded. Additionally, each patient’s carotid Doppler results were ranked by four degrees. Data related to the surgery were recorded.
Results: No retinal emboli were seen in any patient before surgery. In fundus photographs taken on the fifth day after surgery, retinal precapillary arteriolar occlusions were seen in 20 (28.57%) of the patients. Lesions were observed to have disappeared in the third month after surgery. There was no significant (P > .05) difference in age, sex, diabetes mellitus, HT ratio, tobacco consumption percentage, LDL values, and Doppler USG distribution between the two groups of patients with and without lesions. However, CABG surgery and cross-clamp removal time measured significantly
(P < .05) longer in the group with lesions than in the group without lesions.
Conclusion: Our results show that retinal microembolism can occur after CABG surgery in association with surgery time and cross-clamp time; however, this does not cause any clinical outcome.


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How to Cite

Bahceci Simsek, I., & Ozay, B. (2016). Retinal Precapillary Arteriolar Occlusion after Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting Surgery. The Heart Surgery Forum, 19(1), E008-E011.




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