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Access-site Complications of the Transradial Approach: Rare But Still There

[ Vol. 17 , Issue. 3 ]


Stelina Alkagiet, Dimitrios Petroglou*, Dimitrios N. Nikas and Theofilos M. Kolettis   Pages 349 - 363 ( 15 )


In the past decade, the Transradial Approach (TRA) has constantly gained ground among interventional cardiologists. TRA’s anatomical advantages, in addition to patients’ acceptance and financial benefits, due to rapid patient mobilization and shorter hospital stay, made it the default approach in most catheterization laboratories.

Access-site complications of TRA are rare and usually of little clinical impact, thus, they are often overlooked and underdiagnosed. Radial Artery Occlusion (RAO) is the most common, followed by radial artery spasm, perforation, hemorrhagic complications, pseudoaneurysm, arterio-venous fistula, and even rarer complications, such as nerve injury, sterile granuloma, eversion endarterectomy or skin necrosis. Most of them are conservatively treated, but rarely, surgical treatment may be needed and late diagnosis may lead to life-threatening situations, such as hand ischemia or compartment syndrome and tissue loss. Additionally, some complications may eventually lead to TRA failure and switch to a different approach.

On the other hand, it is the opinion of the authors that non-occlusive radial artery injury, commonly included in TRA’s complications in the literature, should be regarded more as an anticipated functional and anatomical cascade, following radial artery puncture and sheath insertion.


Transradial approach, access-site complications, radial artery occlusion, coronary interventions, pseudoaneurysm.


Cardiology Department, G. Papanikolaou General Hospital, Thessaloniki, Cardiology Department, 424 General Military Hospital, Thessaloniki, 1st Cardiology Department, School of Medicine, University of Ioannina, Ioannina, 1st Cardiology Department, School of Medicine, University of Ioannina, Ioannina

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