OBJECTIVES: We sought to evaluate: 1) the long-term outcomes of 127 selected patients receiving unprotected left main coronary artery (LMCA) stenting; and 2) the impact of the debulking procedure before stenting and intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) guidance on their clinical outcomes. BACKGROUND: The long-term safety of stenting of unprotected LMCA stenoses has not been established yet. METHODS: A total of 127 consecutive patients with unprotected LMCA stenosis and normal left ventricular function were treated by elective stenting. The long-term outcomes were evaluated between two groups: IVUS guidance (n = 77) vs. angiographic guidance (n = 50); and debulking plus stenting (debulking/stenting; n = 40) vs. stenting only (n = 87). RESULTS: Angiographic restenosis was documented in 19 (19%) of 100 patients. The lumen diameter after stenting was significantly larger in IVUS-guided group (p = 0.003). The angiographic restenosis rate was significantly lower in the debulking/stenting group (8.3% vs. 25%, p = 0.034). The reference artery size was the only independent predictor of angiographic restenosis. During follow-up (25.5 ± 16.7 months), there were four deaths, but no nonfatal myocardial infarctions occurred. The survival rate was 97.0 ± 1.7% at two years. CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that stenting of unprotected LMCA stenosis might be associated with a favorable long-term outcome in selected patients. Guidance with IVUS may optimize the immediate results, and debulking before stenting seems to be effective in reducing the restenosis rate. However, we need a large-scale, randomized study.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine