Role of prophylactic coronary revascularisation in improving cardiovascular outcomes during non-cardiac surgery: A narrative review
OBJECTIVE To evaluate the usefulness of systematic coronary angiography followed, if needed, by coronary artery angioplasty (percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI)) on the incidence of cardiac ischaemic events after carotid endarterectomy (CEA) in patients without evidence of coronary artery disease (CAD). MATERIALS AND METHODS From January 2005 to December 2008, 426 patients, candidates for CEA, with no history of CAD and with normal cardiac ultrasound and electrocardiography (ECG), were randomised into two groups. In group A (n=216) all the patients had coronary angiography performed before CEA. In group B, all the patients had CEA without previous coronary angiography. In group A, 66 patients presenting significant coronary artery lesions at angiography received PCI before CEA. They subsequently underwent surgery under aspirin (100 mg day(-1)) and clopidogrel (75 mg day(-1)). CEA was performed within a median delay of 4 days after PCI (range: 1-8 days). Risk factors, indications for CEA and surgical techniques were comparable in both groups (p>0.05). The primary combined endpoint of the study was the incidence of postoperative myocardial ischaemic events combined with the incidence of complications of coronary angiography. Secondary endpoints were death and stroke rates after CEA and incidence of cervical haematoma. RESULTS Postoperative mortality was 0% in group A and 0.9% in group B (p=0.24). One postoperative stroke (0.5%) occurred in group A, and two (0.9%) in group B (p=0.62). No postoperative myocardial event was observed in group A, whereas nine ischaemic events were observed in group B, including one fatal myocardial infarction (p=0.01). Binary logistic regression analysis demonstrated that preoperative coronary angiography was the only independent variable that predicted the occurrence of postoperative coronary ischaemia after CEA. The odds ratio for coronary angiography (group A) indicated that when holding all other variables constant, a patient having preoperative coronary angiography before carotid surgery was 4 times less likely to have a cardiac ischaemic event after carotid surgery. No complications related to coronary angiography were observed and no cervical haematomas occurred in patients undergoing surgery under aspirin and clopidogrel in this study. CONCLUSIONS Systematic preoperative coronary angiography, possibly followed by PCI, significantly reduces the incidence of postoperative myocardial events after CEA in patients without clinical evidence of CAD.