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Am Heart J. 2013 Mar;165(3):317-24. doi: 10.1016/j.ahj.2012.10.015. Epub 2012 Dec 22.

Influence of access site choice on incidence of neurologic complications after percutaneous coronary intervention.

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  • 1University Hospital of North Staffordshire, Stoke-on-Trent, UK.



Neurologic complications (NCs) are a rare but potentially devastating complication that may follow percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). In recent years, there has been an increase in use of transradial access, driven by a developing body of evidence that favors its use over femoral access. Concerns have been raised, however, that transradial access may increase the risk of NC compared with transfemoral access. We aimed to investigate the influence of access site selection on the occurrence of NCs through a period of transition during which transradial access became the dominant route for PCI procedures performed in the United Kingdom.


We performed a retrospective analysis of the British Cardiovascular Intervention Society database between January 2006 and December 2010. The data were split into 2 cohorts based on access site. An NC was defined as a periprocedural ischemic stroke, hemorrhagic stroke, or transient ischemic attack occurring before hospital discharge. Binary logistic multivariate analysis was used to investigate the influence of access site utilization on NCs and adjust for measured confounding factors.


Between 2006 and 2010, the use of radial access increased from 17.2% to 50.8% of all PCI procedures. A total of 124,616 radial procedures and 223,476 femoral procedures were studied with a NC rate of 0.11% in each cohort. In univariate (odds ratio 1.01, 95% CI 0.82-1.24, P = .93) and multivariate analysis (odds ratio 0.99, 95% CI 0.79-1.23, P = .91), there was no significant association between the use of radial access and the occurrence of NCs.


These results suggest that radial access is not associated with an increased risk of clinically detected NCs, even during a period when there was a rapid evolution in the preferred access site for PCI in the United Kingdom. These are reassuring results, particularly for operators embarking on a change to radial access for PCI.

Copyright © 2013 Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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