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Am J Med. 2003 Oct 1;115(5):382-9.

Cost-effectiveness of bypass surgery versus stenting in patients with multivessel coronary artery disease.

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Center for Primary Care and Outcomes Research, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California 94305, USA.



To compare the cost-effectiveness of surgical and angioplasty-based coronary artery revascularization techniques, in particular, angioplasty with primary stenting.


We used data from the Study of Economics and Quality of Life, a substudy of the Bypass Angioplasty Revascularization Investigation (BARI), to measure the outcomes and costs of angioplasty and bypass surgery in patients with multivessel coronary artery disease who had not undergone prior coronary artery revascularization. Using a Markov decision model, we updated the outcomes and costs to reflect technology changes since the time of enrollment in BARI, and projected the lifetime costs and quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) for the two procedures from the time of initial treatment through death. We accounted for the effects of improved procedural safety and efficiency, and prolonged therapeutic effects of both surgery and stenting. This study was conducted from a societal perspective.


Surgical revascularization was less costly and resulted in better outcomes than catheter-based intervention including stenting. It remained the preferred strategy after adjusting the stent outcomes to eliminate the costs and events associated with target lesion restenosis. Among angioplasty-based strategies, primary stent use cost an additional 189,000 US dollars per QALY gained compared with a strategy that reserved stent use for treatment of suboptimal balloon angioplasty results.


Bypass surgery results in better outcomes than angioplasty in patients with multivessel disease, and at a lower cost.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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