Operative Outcomes of Multiple-Arterial Versus Single-Arterial Coronary Bypass Grafting

Thomas A. Schwann, Robert H. Habib, Amelia Wallace, David M. Shahian, Sean O'Brien, Jeffery P. Jacobs, John D. Puskas, Paul A. Kurlansky, Milo C. Engoren, Robert F. Tranbaugh, Mark R. Bonnell

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90 Scopus citations


Background: More than 90% of coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) is performed with a single-arterial bypass graft (SABG), based on the left internal thoracic artery (ITA) with supplemental vein grafts. This practice, often justified by safety concerns with multiple-arterial grafting (MABG), defies evidence of improved late survival achieved with bilateral ITA (BITA-MABG) or left ITA plus radial artery (RA-MABG). We hypothesized that MABG and SABG are equally safe. Methods: We analyzed The Society of Thoracic Surgeons National Database (2004 to 2015) to assess the operative safety of BITA-MABG (n = 73,054) and RA-MABG (n = 97,623) vs SABG (n = 1,334,511). Primary end points were operative (30-day or same hospitalization) mortality (OM) and deep sternal wound infections (DSWI). Risk-adjusted odds ratios (AOR) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were derived from by logistic regression with sensitivity analyses in multiple subcohorts including MABG use rate. Results: SABG (73.8% men; median age, 66 years), BITA-MABG (85.1% men; median age, 59 years), and RA-MABG (82.5% men; median age, 61 years) showed distinctly different patient characteristics. Compared with SABG (1.91% OM; 0.73% DSWI), observed OM was lower for BITA-MABG (1.19%, p < 0.001) and RA-MABG (1.19%, p < 0.001). DSWI was higher among BITA-MABG (1.08%, p < 0.001) and similar for RA-MABG (0.71%, p = 0.55). BITA-MABG showed marginally increased, likely not clinically significant, OM (AOR, 1.14; 95% CI, 1.00 to 1.30; p = 0.05) and doubled DSWI (AOR, 2.09; 95% CI, 1.80 to 2.43; p < 0.001). RA-MABG had similar OM (AOR, 1.01; 95% CI, 0.89 to 1.15; p = 0.85) and DSWI (AOR, 0.97; 95% CI, 0.83 to 1.13; p = 0.70). Results were consistent across multiple subcohorts. A U-shaped OM vs BITA use relation was documented, with worse OM at hospitals with low (<5%: AOR, 1.38; 95% CI, 1.18 to 1.61; p < 0.001) and high (≥40%: AOR, 1.31; 95% CI, 1.00 to 1.70; p = 0.049) BITA use. Conclusions: MABG in the United States is associated with OM comparable to SABG and increased DSWI risk with BITA-MABG. Our findings highlight the importance of surgeon and institutional experience and careful patient selection for BITA-MABG. Our short-term results should not in any way dissuade the use of MABG, given its well-established long-term survival advantage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1109-1119
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2018


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