OBJECTIVE Pulse wave velocity is widely used as an index of arterial stiffness. The aim of this study is to assess the usefulness of pulse wave velocity as a risk factor in patients who underwent off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) [OPCAB]. METHODS AND RESULTS Arterial stiffness was measured by brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV) and the ratio of patient's baPWV to age-matched normal value was calculated in 90 OPCAB patients. The mean age and male/female ratio were 69.1 years old and 68/22, respectively. baPWV was higher in CABG patients (1,891 +/- 511 cm/s) than that in age-matched normal value (p<0.01). Preoperatively, baPWV ratio did not correlate to the severity of coronary artery diseases. There were 1 (1.1%) in-hospital death and 48 incidences of postoperative complication in 38 patients. The baPWV ratio in the group with postoperative major complications except atrial fibrillation tended to be higher than that in the non-complication group (1.38 +/- 0.36 vs 1.26 +/- 0.30, p = 0.09). CONCLUSION The elevated baPWV may be a useful predictor of operative risk in patients who undergo CABG.