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Interact Cardiovasc Thorac Surg. 2016 Jan;22(1):63-71. doi: 10.1093/icvts/ivv291. Epub 2015 Oct 26.

How revascularization on the beating heart with cardiopulmonary bypass compares to off-pump? A meta-analysis of observational studies.

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Department of Surgery and Cancer, Imperial College London, London, UK
Department of Surgery and Cancer, Imperial College London, London, UK.


Off-pump coronary artery bypass surgery has been a controversial area of debate and the outcome profile of the technique has been thoroughly investigated. Scepticism regarding the reported outcomes and the conduct of the randomized trials comparing this technique with conventional on-pump coronary artery bypass surgery has been widely voiced, and the technique of off-pump surgery remains as an infrequently adopted approach to myocardial revascularization worldwide. Criticisms of the technique are related to lower rates of complete revascularization and its unknown long-term consequences, the significant detrimental effects on mortality and major adverse events when emergency conversion is required, and the significant lack of long-term survival and morbidity data. The hybrid technique of myocardial revascularization on the beating heart with the use of cardiopulmonary bypass may theoretically provide the beneficial effects of off-pump surgery in terms of myocardial protection and organ protection, while providing the safety and stability of on-pump surgery to allow complete revascularization. Large randomized comparison to support evidence-based choices is currently lacking. In this article, we have meta-analysed the outcomes of on-pump beating heart surgery in comparison with off-pump surgery focusing on major adverse cardiovascular and cerebrovascular adverse events (MACCE) including mortality, stroke and myocardial infarction and the degree of revascularization and number of bypass grafts performed. It was demonstrated that the beating heart on-pump technique allows a significantly higher number of bypass grafts to be performed, resulting in significantly higher degree of revascularization. We have also demonstrated a slightly higher rate of 30-day mortality and MACCE with the technique although not at a statistically significant level. These results should be considered alongside the population risk profile, where a significantly higher risk cohort had undergone the beating heart on-pump technique. Long-term survival and morbidity figures are required to assess the impact of these findings in the coronary surgery patient population.


Beating heart; Coronary artery bypass graft surgery; Off-pump; On-pump; Outcomes

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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