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Ann Thorac Surg. 1978 Sep;26(3):215-21.

Operative risk in patients with previous coronary artery bypass.


Noncoronary operations were performed in 358 patients who had undergone a previous coronary artery bypass grafting, with a mortality of 1.1%. In 70 patients (20%), the staged operation was planned and subsequent operation performed 6 to 12 weeks after bypass with no cardiac complications and 1 death. In the others, operation was performed 10 days to 89 months after bypass for either urgent reasons or new lesions. Three deaths and significant numbers of medical cardiac complications occurred in those patients subjected to operation within 30 days. The subsequent operation was vascular in 232 patients, with 3 deaths (1.3%); thoracic in 43, with no deaths; and general surgical in 113, with 1 death (0.9%). Follow-up study showed 307 patients (87%) still alive after 30 days to seven years. Late death was due to myocardial infarction in only 12 patients (3%). This study suggests that the risk of operation is as good in patients who have had successful coronary artery bypass as in those without coronary artery disease, and that the risk of subsequent myocardial infarction is small.

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