Ligation of collateral vessels

Also known as: collateral vessel closure.

What is ligation of collateral vessels?

Collateral vessels are abnormally large blood vessels that connect the aorta (the large blood vessel that carries oxygenated blood from the heart to the rest of the body) to the pulmonary artery (the blood vessels that carry unoxygenated blood from the heart to the lungs for oxygenation), and are usually associated with a congenital abnormality of the heart. As they may make the heart work harder they may need to be closed. The process of closing these collateral vessels off is called ligation of collateral vessels.

What happens during the procedure?

Usually the process starts with cardiac catheterization by a interventional cardiologist who will insert a thin tube (catheter) into a vein in the leg or neck and thread the catheter through the heart to the site of the collateral vessel/s. Special metal coils or plugs are passed over the catheter and placed in the collateral vessel which causes the vessel to clot.

Is any special preparation needed?

Your child may need to avoid certain medications and not eat or drink before the procedure.

What are the risk factors?

Bleeding, infection and arrhythmias are possible risks. Your pediatric cardiologist will answer any questions regarding complications which are uncommon.

Ligation of collateral vessels at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital

Ligation of collateral vessels is performed by Nicklaus Children’s Hospital’s team of highly respected interventional cardiologists/surgeons using the latest equipment available.


Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP

This page was last updated on: April 30, 2021 04:44 PM

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