Pathological Analysis of the Explanted Gore-Tex Surgical Membrane after Surgical Implantation

  • C. A. Mestres
  • J. L. Pomar
Conference paper


The polytetrafluoroethylene Gore-Tex Surgical Membrane has been used at our Institution for pericardial closure, temporary skin closure after cardiac operations and to close the retroperitoneum over aortic vascular prostheses. Five Gore-Tex membranes have been available for examination. Light microscopy showed that neither tissue ingrowth nor bacterial growth have been developed in any of the samples studied. In addition, only a minimal epicardial reaction in the area beneath the membrane was seen in one of the cases of pericardial closure. This material seems to act as an adequate substitute for biological barriers such as the pericardium and the skin.

The Gore-Tex Surgical Membrane* is a very thin sheet of expanded polytetrafluoroethylene that has initially been designed as a pericardial substitute in an attempt to reduce or minimize adhesions formation to provide a safe and efficient plane of dissection which is of utmost interest when dealing with a cardiac reoperation. In addition, we have been using it also as a substitute of other biological barriers such as the skin and the retroperitoneum. In the last few years, some information about clinical experiences with the GSM has been available, however very few information has been collected about GSM explants1–3. We have been able to collect some GSM explants and histological analysis has been performed to ascertain if there has been tissue penetration or bacterial colonization.


Aortic Valve Replacement Tissue Ingrowth Surgical Implantation Biological Barrier Tissue Attachment 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. A. Mestres
    • 1
  • J. L. Pomar
    • 1
  1. 1.Cardiovascular Surgery. Hospital Clínico y ProvincialUniversity of BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

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