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G Ital Cardiol (Rome). 2012 Nov;13(11):723-33. doi: 10.1714/1168.12948.

[Evolution of coronary artery bypass graft techniques].

[Article in Italian]

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U.O. di Cardiochirurgia, Ospedale SS. Annunziata, Sassari.


The results of coronary surgical revascularization are constantly improving despite the worsening of patient's risk profiles. Nowadays this procedure represents the gold standard for patients with multivessel disease or critical left main stenosis, according to European and American guidelines. Recent data show that these guidelines are poorly implemented in the "real world". Different reasons can explain this phenomenon, among these, the invasiveness and morbidity of surgical procedures, which determine low acceptance rates by the patients. In recent years, several procedures have been developed in order to improve surgical therapy; the most promising include complete arterial revascularization, the "no-touch aorta technique", mini-invasive techniques, improvement of biocompatibility of extracorporeal circulation, and hybrid revascularization. Although these procedures still need statistical evidence, some data support their use in specific patient subsets. If these trends will be confirmed, it will be possible to choose the best surgical strategy for each individual patient. At present, there are no data suggesting the best choice between on-pump and off-pump techniques; there are indications to use arterial conduits in young patients, whereas the no-touch aorta technique, which seems to reduce cerebrovascular complications, requires further statistical confirmation; the mini-invasive and hybrid approaches need additional data to confirm their effectiveness. This accounts for the great variability among centers regarding the strategies of myocardial revascularization, often restricted to few techniques. In our opinion, nowadays, every heart surgery unit should offer all of these modern techniques. In order to decide for the best treatment between medical, surgical and percutaneous therapies, the creation of a Heart Team has been demonstrated to be effective. All components of the Heart Team should be familiar not only with the use of anatomical and clinical risk scores, but they should also know the main aspects of each therapeutic option along with their availability. This condition is fundamental in order to discuss and set up the best surgical option for each patient, and consequently improve quality of treatment and clinical outcome. In order to suggest the best therapy to the patient, the Heart Team should take into consideration the guideline recommendations and available operative setting within the cardiac unit.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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