Brachial artery occlusion secondary to hypereosinophilic syndrome

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Journal of Vascular Surgery








Hypereosinophilic syndrome (HES) is characterized by an overproduction of eosinophils that leads to organ damage. Although most cases of HES frequently affect the lungs, heart, and gastrointestinal tract, there are a few reported cases of peripheral vascular involvement. We report a case of a patient with a history of colonic HES who presented with idiopathic occlusion of the brachial artery. A 28-year-old woman with a recent history of eosinophilic colitis presented with a several-week history of left hand pain, pallor, and paresthesias. Her hand was cool, without palpable pulses. Her eosinophilia count was 38%. An arteriogram documented a left brachial artery occlusion and diffuse left arm vasospasm. A brachial-to-brachial bypass was performed. Postoperatively, there was extensive vasospasm of her distal upper extremity arteries, which was treated with calcium-channel blockers and steroids. Her symptoms resolved and she has been asymptomatic for 9 months. The segment of occluded artery was found to contain many eosinophils on histologic examination. HES of the arterial system is an exceedingly rare cause of occlusion. Our patient presented with eosinophilia, arterial vasospasm with subsequent occlusion, and the presence of eosinophilic infiltration on the pathologic specimen. These data, combined with the patient's previous history, demonstrate that the patient's occlusion may have been secondary to HES. Copyright © 2005 by The Society for Vascular Surgery.

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