Abdominal Aorta Catheter (AAC)

Available in: Rats Anesthetics Analgesic
Pre-Operative Procedures Intra-Operative Care Post-Operative Care

Surgical Preparation

The animal is anesthetized and clipped over the abdominal region and at the nape. Sterile eye lubricant is placed in both eyes, and the clipped skin area over the abdominal wall is surgically prepared. The animal is placed in dorsal recumbency on a surgery board fitted with a sterile board drape. Analgesic is administered.

Surgical Description

The surgical site is draped with a sterile drape. To expose the abdominal aorta, midline longitudinal incisions are made to the skin and abdominal wall at the level of the gastric area. Padded retractors are used to increase surgical visibility. A dissecting scope may be required for the remainder of this procedure. Surrounding tissues are gently cleared using blunt dissection to expose the stomach. Once the aorta is isolated, a catheter is positioned and pushed through the dorsal, abdominal muscle wall and tunneled to the nape. The catheter tip is cut to length and pushed through the aorta toward the animal’s heart. Excess bleeding is controlled with gauze and cotton tipped applicators. Once the catheter is in position, blood is seen flowing freely into the catheter. A small amount of sterile saline is pushed through the catheter, and the abdominal cavity is flushed.

Surgical Closing

The ventral abdominal incision is closed with approved closing materials and the catheter is tacked to the abdominal wall. The animal is then turned to permit access to the dorsal area where the catheter will be tunneled through to an exit site on the nape. The nape is surgically prepared and three incisions are made to the skin: one behind each shoulder blade and one along the midline of the animal’s back. The catheter is weaved through the dorsal skin incisions forming a “catheter halo.” If required, the skin incisions are sutured. The catheter is locked, and the tip is flame sealed. The dorsal incision is closed with approved closing materials (suture or stainless steel clips) and the surgery sites are treated with an approved disinfectant followed by an alcohol swabbing.


A standard sham AAC model is prepared as described above with regards to surgical site preparation, exposure of the abdominal aorta, tunneling, wound closing, and surgical site disinfection; however, no catheters are inserted.