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Heart. 2012 May;98(10):799-805. doi: 10.1136/heartjnl-2011-300753. Epub 2012 Mar 15.

Long-term outcomes of percutaneous coronary intervention versus coronary artery bypass grafting for unprotected left main coronary bifurcation disease in the drug-eluting stent era.

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  • 1Cardiovascular Center and Cardiology Division, Seoul St Mary's Hospital, 505 Banpodong, Seochogu, Seoul, Republic of Korea.



There are limited data on long-term outcomes (i.e., beyond 4 years) for patients with unprotected left main bifurcation disease who underwent percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) or coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) in the drug-eluting stent (DES) era. This study therefore compared the treatment effects of PCI and CABG in unprotected left main bifurcation disease.


865 patients with unprotected left main bifurcation disease treated with either PCI using DES (n=556) or CABG (n=309) were evaluated between May 2003 and December 2009. PCI-treated patients were further categorised into simple stenting (n=360) or complex stenting (n=196).


Median follow-up was 4.2 years (IQR 2.9-5.2 years). After adjusting covariates with multivariate Cox hazard regression model and inverse probability of treatment weighting, the long-term cumulative rates of death (HR 0.95; 95% CI 0.62 to 1.45) or composite of death, Q-wave myocardial infarction, or stroke (HR 0.97, 95% CI 0.64 to 1.48) were not significantly different for patients undergoing PCI or CABG except for target-vessel revascularisation (TVR) (HR 4.42, 95% CI 2.39 to 8.18). The complex stenting group had similar long-term clinical outcomes compared with the simple stenting group except for TVR (HR 1.94, 95% CI 1.22 to 3.10). In further analysis with propensity score matching, overall findings were consistent.


In patients with unprotected left main bifurcation disease, PCI using DES provides similar long-term (up to 5.2 years) clinical outcomes except for TVR compared with CABG. Complex and simple stenting yielded similar outcomes except for a higher TVR rate in complex stenting.

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