Hubacek J, Kalla S, Galbraith PD, Graham MM, Knudtson ML, Ghali WA, for the APPROACH Investigators. Outcomes of revascularization strategies for two vessel coronary artery disease involving the proximal left anterior descending artery in an era of improved pharmacotherapy and stenting. Can J Cardiol 2008: 24(2);121-126.

Background: The best therapeutic strategy for patients with double-vessel coronary artery disease and proximal left anterior descending artery involvement (2VD + pLAD) is not clear.

Objectives: To compare the survival experience of a cohort of cardiac catheterization patients with 2VD + pLAD based on chosen therapeutic strategy (medical management versus percutaneous coronary intervention [PCI] versus coronary artery bypass graft surgery [CABG]).

Methods: The authors identified and studied a total of 603 patients with 2VD + pLAD from all patients who underwent diagnostic coronary angiography in Alberta between January 1997 and May 1999. The primary end point was five-year survival from index catheterization for each of the treatment groups and from time of revascularization when the two revascularization strategies were compared.

Results: Risk-adjusted hazard ratios (HR) comparing cumulative five-year survival rates of patients treated medically, or with PCI or CABG indicated a survival benefit for patients treated with CABG (HR 0.24, 95% CI 0.11 to 0.54; P<0.001) and PCI (HR 0.43, 95% CI 0.24 to 0.77; P=0.003) compared with medical management. Meanwhile, a risk-adjusted comparison of revascularization strategies suggested a possible trend toward higher mortality for PCI-treated patients versus CABG-treated patients (HR 1.56, 95% CI 0.65 to 3.72; P=0.125).

Conclusions: The results of this registry-based observational study suggest a survival benefit from revascularization compared with medical management in patients with 2VD + pLAD. Furthermore, the authors found a trend toward better survival in CABG-treated patients compared with PCI-treated patients.

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