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Assessing the association of appropriateness of coronary revascularization and clinical outcomes for patients with stable coronary artery disease


Objectives — The study assessed the appropriateness of coronary revascularization in Ontario, Canada, and examined its association with longer-term outcomes.

Background — Although appropriate use criteria for coronary revascularization have been developed to improve the rational use of cardiac invasive procedures, it is unknown whether greater adherence to appropriateness guidelines is associated with improved clinical outcomes in stable coronary artery disease.

Methods — A population-based cohort of stable patients undergoing cardiac catheterization was assembled from April 1, 2006, to March 31, 2007. The appropriateness for coronary revascularization at the time of coronary angiography was retrospectively adjudicated using the appropriate use criteria. Clinical outcomes between coronary revascularization and medical treatment without revascularization, stratified by appropriateness categories, were compared.

Results — In 1,625 patients with stable coronary artery disease, percutaneous coronary intervention or coronary artery bypass grafting was only performed in 69% who had an appropriate indication for coronary revascularization. Coronary revascularization was associated with a lower adjusted hazard of death or acute coronary syndrome (hazard ratio [HR]: 0.61; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.42 to 0.88) at 3 years compared with medical therapy in appropriate patients. The rate of coronary revascularization was 54% in the uncertain category and 45% in the inappropriate category. No significant difference in death or acute coronary syndrome between coronary revascularization and no revascularization in the uncertain category (HR: 0.57; 95% CI: 0.28 to 1.16) and the inappropriate category (HR: 0.99; 95% CI: 0.48 to 2.02) was observed.

Conclusions — Using the appropriateness use criteria, the authors identified substantial underutilization and overutilization of coronary revascularization in contemporary clinical practice. Underutilization of coronary revascularization is associated with significantly increased risks of adverse outcomes in patients with appropriate indications.



Ko DT, Guo H, Wijeysundera HC, Natarajan MK, Nagpal AD, Feindel CM, Kingsbury K, Cohen EA, Tu JV; Cardiac Care Network (CCN) of Ontario Variations in Revascularization Practice in Ontario (VRPO) Working Group.. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2012; 60(19):1876-84. Epub 2012 Oct 10.

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