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Objective

To investigate the ability of shape memory Dacron polymer vascular coils to induce the complete, gradual occlusion of the canine jugular vein.

Study Design

Observational pilot study.

Animals

Nine purpose-bred dogs.

Methods

Eighteen coils were deployed in nine dogs using fluoroscopic-guided percutaneous transvenous coil implantation. Individual coil formulations varied around a Dacron polymer base. Jugular vein diameter, percent vessel occlusion, and thrombus echogenicity were monitored at weekly intervals using ultrasonography. Affected jugular veins were harvested at 6 weeks post-implantation and histopathological analysis was performed to assess adventitial fibrosis, intimal layer thickening, and inflammation.

Results

Ten coils migrated from the jugular veins to the pulmonary vasculature within 0–2 weeks following implantation. Three jugular veins achieved at least 90% occlusion at six weeks. Histopathology of these jugular veins revealed marked perivascular thickening and fibrovascular proliferation, increased infiltration of macrophages, neutrophils and lymphocytes, and abundant fibroplasia.

Conclusions

Complete, gradual occlusion of a jugular vein was achieved in three dogs. Significant vessel wall reaction and inflammation can induce gradual vessel occlusion when a Dacron coil remains implanted within the jugular vein. Dacron polymer coils could be a feasible treatment option for the gradual occlusion of congenital portosystemic shunts in dogs using minimally invasive, percutaneous transvenous implantation.