Clinical and Thermographic Findings in the Late Postoperative Period after Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery Using the Radial Artery

(Division of Cardiac Surgery, Southern Tohoku General Hospital, Koriyama, Japan and Division of Cardiovascular Surgery, Aomori Prefectural Hospital*, Aomori, Japan)

Shoichi Takahashi Mitsuaki Sadahiro* Kazuhiro Yamaya*
Shigeo Tanaka*
We evaluated the relation of changes in skin temperature, measured by thermography, to clinical symptoms and findings in patients who underwent coronary artery bypass surgery using the radial artery. All had a negative Allen test before operation. Ten consecutive patients who underwent surgery at least 3 months prior to the study were selected. Left radial artery grafts were harvested in all patients. Skin temperature was measured twice, before and after exercise. Two patients had a cold sensation at the arterial harvest site at rest. Three, including these two, complained of pain along the harvest site after exercise. No differences in temperature were observed before and after exercise in the ulnar aspects of the palm or forearm on either the left or right side. On the other hand, the increase in radial aspect temperature on the left side was smaller than that on the right. Skin temperature was clearly decreased after loaded exercise in 3 patients. We believe that the indications of grafting should be carefully considered because patients can show findings associated with circulatory disturbance at arterial harvest sites.
@Jpn. J. Cardiovasc. Surg. 32: 220 -223 (2003)