July 1982

Complications of Denver Peritoneovenous Shunting

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis.

Arch Surg. 1982;117(7):924-928. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1982.01380310038009

• The records of 49 consecutive patients treated with Denver peritoneovenous shunts were reviewed to determine the incidence of complications and length of patient survival. Thirty-eight complications (16 types) were identified in 22 (45%) of the patients and, in 10 instances, contributed to subsequent death. Ten percent of shunts failed during long-term follow-up. The 54% one-year survival by life-table analysis of patients with cirrhosis treated with the Denver shunt matched results previously reported for similar patients treated with the LeVeen shunt. Patients with intra-abdominal malignant neoplasms had an 11% one-year survival overall. Although it too is associated with significant complications, the Denver peritoneovenous shunt seems to have a lower failure rate and a lower incidence of complications than the LeVeen peritoneovenous shunt. Thus, the Denver shunt offers advantages in the treatment of intractable ascites.

(Arch Surg 1982;117:924-928)