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Eur Heart J. 2004 Sep;25(18):1641-50.

Do men benefit more than women from an interventional strategy in patients with unstable angina or non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction? The impact of gender in the RITA 3 trial.

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Medical Statistics Unit, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London, UK.



The RITA 3 trial randomized patients with non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction or unstable angina to strategies of early intervention (angiography followed by revascularization) or conservative care (ischaemia or symptom driven angiography). The aim of this analysis was to investigate the impact of gender on the effect of these two strategies.


In total, 1810 patients (682 women and 1128 men) were randomized. The risk factor profile of women at presentation was markedly different to men. There was evidence that men benefited more from an early intervention strategy for death or non-fatal myocardial infarction at 1 year (adjusted odds ratios 0.63, 95% confidence interval 0.41-0.98 for men and 1.79, 95% confidence interval 0.95-3.35 for women; interaction p-value=0.007). Men who underwent the assigned angiogram were more likely to be put forward for coronary artery bypass surgery, even after allowing for differences in disease severity.


An early intervention strategy resulted in a beneficial effect in men which was not seen in women although caution is needed in interpretation. Further research is needed to evaluate why women do not appear to benefit from early intervention and to identify treatments that improve the prognosis of women.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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