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Minerva Cardioangiologica 1999 July-August;47(7-8):231-8


language: English, Italian

Left main coronary artery disease. Clinical and angiographic features. A retrospective study regarding two groups of patients with left main coronary artery disease and three-vessel disease

Garini A., Astorri E., Pedroni P., Ferrari O., Bonifazi C.


Background. The aim of this study was to assess the ability of clinical and instrumental features to identify patients with left main coronary artery disease (LMCD) compared with a three-vessel coronary artery disease group.
Methods. A cohort of 70 patients with LMCD was matched with another one of 66 patients with three-vessel disease. A history of angina before angiography was similar in both groups; the higher degrees of stable angina and the forms of unstable angina were moderately prevalent in the group with LMCD.
Results. In the last subgroup a significantly reduced incidence of previous acute myocardial infarction (AMI) was observed (p<0.05). The resting electrocardiogram (ECG) showed higher incidence of atrial fibrillation (fa) and left bundle branch block (BBS) in the subjects with LMCD, with a statistic value (p<0.05). The exercise test performed by a lot of patients appeared equally positive for inducible ischemia in the 2 groups. Significantly higher exercise peak load was achieved by the patients with three-vessel disease (p<0.05). The coronary angiography showed a prevalence of right dominant circulation in the 2 groups; significantly the collateral circulation was more represented in the subjects with three-vessel disease (p<0.05). Most patients with LMCD underwent a bypass coronary artery graft surgery (CABG surgery) more frequently than the ones with three-vessel disease (p<0.01). In the former group the cardiovascular mortality within an average 2-year follow-up proved higher as to the latter group even if without statistic significance.
Conclusions. Nevertheless this retrospective study showed some limitations. Particularly the incidence of clinical and instrumental variables and their capacity to differentiate LMCD patients from those with three-vessel disease were not demonstrated.

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