Patients having anaesthesia for vascular surgery are often high risk patients with severe atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is a hardening and thickening of the arteries which eventually leads to a loss of blood supply to the organ which that artery supplies. If the coronary arteries are affected patients may have angina or present with a heart attack. If the carotid arteries in the neck are affected patients present with minor or major strokes. Atherosclerosis which affects the femoral or popliteal arteries (those which supply the legs) may result in gangrene of the affected limbs. The arteries involved determine the type of operation.
Three common vascular operations are:
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