Left Internal Mammary Artery Improves 5-Year Survival in Patients Under 40 Subjected to Surgical Revascularization
Background: The population of young patients under 40 requiring coronary bypass surgery is characterized by an extremely and unusually rapid progression of coronary heart disease. The aim of the present study was to assess the clinical status and quality of life in these patients after surgery in relation to the type of conduit used to revascularize the left anterior descending artery (LAD).
Methods: One hundred seventeen patients under 40 (range, 30-40 years) underwent coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) at our institution between 1991 and 1999. Ninety-one patients received LIMA to LAD graft (group A), and in 26 patients the saphenous vein was used to graft this vessel (group B). Seventy-eight patients (63 in group A and 15 in group B) were assessed after a mean time of 71 ± 26 months. They were asked to fill out a questionnaire aimed at their subjective assessment of their quality of life as compared with their preoperative status.
Results: Five-year actuarial survival was higher in patients with LIMA to LAD graft (log rank test: P < .004). The functional status of patients in group B was significantly worse in comparison to group A: respectively, CCS 2.2 ± 1.1 versus 1.5 ± 0.7; (P = .02), NYHA 2.2 ± 1.1 versus 1.3 ± 0.5; (P = .002). Patients in group B more frequently required reinstitution of nitroglycerine treatment (93% versus 56%; P = .025). We failed to show differences between the 2 groups as far as subjective quality of life is concerned. In summary, 63% of patients perceived it to be worse, 29% to be better, and 8% felt it had not changed.
Conclusion: The use of LIMA is crucial in patients undergoing CABG under the age of 40 in order to achieve the best possible surgical results. Quicker recurrence of coronary disease symptoms is observed when a vein is used to graft the LAD. It may reflect an earlier progress of atherosclerosis in venous grafts.
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