Publications by authors named "Leif Thuesen"

236 Publications

Lower ST-elevation myocardial infarction incidence during COVID-19 epidemic in Northern Europe.

Scand Cardiovasc J 2020 12 18;54(6):358-360. Epub 2020 Sep 18.

Research Unit of Internal Medicine, Medical Research Center Oulu, University of Oulu and Oulu University Hospital, Oulu, Finland.

We compared the ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) incidence during COVID-19 pandemic (March 2020) to January-February 2020 and to same time period in earlier years 2017-2019 in five Nordic-Baltic tertiary centers. During 2017-2019, there were no marked differences in STEMI incidence between January, February and March. During 2020, there was an average drop of 32% in STEMI incidence in March. The isolation measures may decrease the risk for respiratory virus infection and contribute to the lower STEMI incidence and that we might benefit from firmer suggestions on hand hygiene and social distancing during flu season at least among high-risk individuals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14017431.2020.1820563DOI Listing
December 2020

Randomized Comparison of the Polymer-Free Biolimus-Coated BioFreedom Stent With the Ultrathin Strut Biodegradable Polymer Sirolimus-Eluting Orsiro Stent in an All-Comers Population Treated With Percutaneous Coronary Intervention: The SORT OUT IX Trial.

Circulation 2020 06 21;141(25):2052-2063. Epub 2020 May 21.

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby Hospital, Denmark (M.M., L.J., S.D.K., S.C., C.J.T., H.E.B., T.T., A.E., E.H.C.).

Background: In patients with increased bleeding risk, the biolimus A9-coated BioFreedom stent, a stainless steel drug-coated stent free from polymer, has shown superiority compared with a bare-metal stent. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the BioFreedom stent is noninferior to a modern ultrathin strut biodegradable polymer cobalt-chromium sirolimus-eluting Orsiro stent in an all-comers patient population treated with percutaneous coronary intervention.

Methods: The SORT OUT IX trial (Scandinavian Organization for Randomized Trials With Clinical Outcome IX), was a large-scale, registry-based, randomized, multicenter, single-blind, 2-arm, noninferiority trial. The primary end point, major adverse cardiovascular events, was defined as the composite of cardiac death, myocardial infarction not related to any segment other than the target lesion, or target lesion revascularization within 1 year, analyzed by intention-to-treat. The trial was powered to assess noninferiority for major adverse cardiovascular events of the BioFreedom stent compared with the Orsiro stent with a predetermined noninferiority margin of 0.021.

Results: Between December 14, 2015 and April 21, 2017, 3151 patients were assigned to treatment with the BioFreedom stent (1572 patients, 1966 lesions) or to the Orsiro stent (1579 patients, 1985 lesions). Five patients were lost to follow-up because of emigration (99.9% follow-up rate). Mean age was 66.3±10.9, diabetes mellitus was seen in 19.3% of patients, and 53% of the patients had acute coronary syndromes. At 1 year, intention-to-treat analysis showed that 79 (5.0%) patients, who were assigned the BioFreedom stent, and 59 (3.7%), who were assigned the Orsiro stent, met the primary end point (absolute risk difference 1.29% [upper limit of one-sided 95% CI 2.50%]; =0.14). Significantly more patients in the BioFreedom stent group had target lesion revascularization than those in the Orsiro stent group (55 [3.5%] vs 20 [1.3%], rate ratio 2.77 [95% CI, 1.66-4.62]; <0.0001).

Conclusions: The biolimus A9-coated BioFreedom polymer-free stent did not meet criteria for noninferiority for major adverse cardiovascular events at 12 months when compared with the ultrathin strut biodegradable polymer sirolimus-eluting Orsiro stent in an all-comers population Registration: URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov; Unique identifier: NCT02623140.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.119.040241DOI Listing
June 2020

Intravascular ultrasound to guide left main stem intervention: a NOBLE trial substudy.

EuroIntervention 2020 Jun;16(3):201-209

Department of Cardiology, Glenfield Hospital, Leicester, United Kingdom.

Aims: We aimed to investigate the association between the use and findings of IVUS with clinical outcomes in the PCI arm of a randomised trial of LMS PCI.

Methods And Results: The NOBLE trial randomised patients with LMS disease to treatment by PCI or CABG. Of 603 patients treated by PCI, 435 (72%) underwent post-PCI IVUS assessment, 224 of which were analysed in a core laboratory. At five years, the composite of MACCE was 18.9% if post-PCI IVUS was performed versus 25.0% if it was not performed (p=0.45, after adjustment). Overall repeat revascularisation was not reduced (10.6% vs 16.5%, p=0.11); however, LMS TLR was (5.1% vs 11.6%, p=0.01) if IVUS was used. For comparison of stent expansion, LMS MSA was split into tertiles. We found no significant difference in MACCE, death, myocardial infarction or stent thrombosis between tertiles. There was a significant difference between the lower and upper tertiles for repeat revascularisation (17.6% vs 5.2%, p=0.02) and LMS TLR (12.2% vs 0%, p=0.002).

Conclusions: Post-PCI IVUS assessment and adequate stent expansion are not associated with reduced MACCE; however, there is an association with reduced LMS TLR. The use of intracoronary imaging to prevent stent underexpansion in LMS PCI is likely to improve outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4244/EIJ-D-19-01003DOI Listing
June 2020

Randomised comparison of provisional side branch stenting versus a two-stent strategy for treatment of true coronary bifurcation lesions involving a large side branch: the Nordic-Baltic Bifurcation Study IV.

Open Heart 2020 19;7(1):e000947. Epub 2020 Jan 19.

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

Background: It is still uncertain whether coronary bifurcations with lesions involving a large side branch (SB) should be treated by stenting the main vessel and provisional stenting of the SB (simple) or by routine two-stent techniques (complex). We aimed to compare clinical outcome after treatment of lesions in large bifurcations by simple or complex stent implantation.

Methods: The study was a randomised, superiority trial. Enrolment required a SB≥2.75 mm, ≥50% diameter stenosis in both vessels, and allowed SB lesion length up to 15 mm. The primary endpoint was a composite of cardiac death, non-procedural myocardial infarction and target lesion revascularisation at 6 months. Two-year clinical follow-up was included in this primary reporting due to lower than expected event rates.

Results: A total of 450 patients were assigned to simple stenting (n=221) or complex stenting (n=229) in 14 Nordic and Baltic centres. Two-year follow-up was available in 218 (98.6%) and 228 (99.5%) patients, respectively. The primary endpoint of major adverse cardiac events (MACE) at 6 months was 5.5% vs 2.2% (risk differences 3.2%, 95% CI -0.2 to 6.8, p=0.07) and at 2 years 12.9% vs 8.4% (HR 0.63, 95% CI 0.35 to 1.13, p=0.12) after simple versus complex treatment. In the subgroup treated by newer generation drug-eluting stents, MACE was 12.0% vs 5.6% (HR 0.45, 95% CI 0.17 to 1.17, p=0.10) after simple versus complex treatment.

Conclusion: In the treatment of bifurcation lesions involving a large SB with ostial stenosis, routine two-stent techniques did not improve outcome significantly compared with treatment by the simpler main vessel stenting technique after 2 years.

Trial Registration Number: NCT01496638.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/openhrt-2018-000947DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6999681PMC
June 2020

Percutaneous coronary angioplasty versus coronary artery bypass grafting in the treatment of unprotected left main stenosis: updated 5-year outcomes from the randomised, non-inferiority NOBLE trial.

Lancet 2020 01 23;395(10219):191-199. Epub 2019 Dec 23.

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark. Electronic address:

Background: Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is increasingly used in revascularisation of patients with left main coronary artery disease in place of the standard treatment, coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). The NOBLE trial aimed to evaluate whether PCI was non-inferior to CABG in the treatment of left main coronary artery disease and reported outcomes after a median follow-up of 3·1 years. We now report updated 5-year outcomes of the trial.

Methods: The prospective, randomised, open-label, non-inferiority NOBLE trial was done at 36 hospitals in nine northern European countries. Patients with left main coronary artery disease requiring revascularisation were enrolled and randomly assigned (1:1) to receive PCI or CABG. The primary endpoint was major adverse cardiac or cerebrovascular events (MACCE), a composite of all-cause mortality, non-procedural myocardial infarction, repeat revascularisation, and stroke. Non-inferiority of PCI to CABG was defined as the upper limit of the 95% CI of the hazard ratio (HR) not exceeding 1·35 after 275 MACCE had occurred. Secondary endpoints included all-cause mortality, non-procedural myocardial infarction, and repeat revascularisation. Outcomes were analysed in the intention-to-treat population. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01496651.

Findings: Between Dec 9, 2008, and Jan 21, 2015, 1201 patients were enrolled and allocated to PCI (n=598) or CABG (n=603), with 17 subsequently lost to early follow-up. 592 patients in each group were included in this analysis. At a median of 4·9 years of follow-up, the predefined number of events was reached for adequate power to assess the primary endpoint. Kaplan-Meier 5-year estimates of MACCE were 28% (165 events) for PCI and 19% (110 events) for CABG (HR 1·58 [95% CI 1·24-2·01]); the HR exceeded the limit for non-inferiority of PCI compared to CABG. CABG was found to be superior to PCI for the primary composite endpoint (p=0·0002). All-cause mortality was estimated in 9% after PCI versus 9% after CABG (HR 1·08 [95% CI 0·74-1·59]; p=0·68); non-procedural myocardial infarction was estimated in 8% after PCI versus 3% after CABG (HR 2·99 [95% CI 1·66-5·39]; p=0·0002); and repeat revascularisation was estimated in 17% after PCI versus 10% after CABG (HR 1·73 [95% CI 1·25-2·40]; p=0·0009).

Interpretation: In revascularisation of left main coronary artery disease, PCI was associated with an inferior clinical outcome at 5 years compared with CABG. Mortality was similar after the two procedures but patients treated with PCI had higher rates of non-procedural myocardial infarction and repeat revascularisation.

Funding: Biosensors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(19)32972-1DOI Listing
January 2020

Ten-Year Outcomes of Sirolimus-Eluting Versus Zotarolimus-Eluting Coronary Stents in Patients With Versus Without Diabetes Mellitus (SORT OUT III).

Am J Cardiol 2020 02 7;125(3):349-353. Epub 2019 Nov 7.

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

We compared 10-year clinical outcomes in diabetes and nondiabetes patients treated with Endeavor zotarolimus-eluting (ZES) or Cypher sirolimus-eluting coronary stents (SES). A total of 1,162 patients were randomized to ZES (169 with diabetes) and 1,170 patients were randomized to SES (168 with diabetes). Patients were further stratified by diabetes status at the time of inclusion. A subgroup of patients with diabetes (n = 88) underwent angiographic re-evaluation 10 months after stent implantation. End points included a combined end point of death or myocardial infarction, and the individual end points of death, myocardial infarction, and revascularization. In patients with diabetes, we found no difference in the combined end point (odds ratio [OR] 0.81, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.53 to 1.24), death (OR 0.80, 95% CI 0.51 to 1.25), or in MI (OR 1.07, 95% CI 0.60 to 1.91). However, diabetics with ZES more frequently underwent coronary revascularization compared with SES patients (OR 1.93, 95% CI 1.05 to 3.66). In patients without diabetes, ZES and SES had similar 10-year rates of all end points (death: OR 1.13, 95% CI 0.93 to 1.39; MI: OR 0.80, 95% CI 0.61 to 1.05; revascularization: OR 0.81, 95% CI 0.61 to 1.09). Landmark analysis from 5 to 10 years showed no difference in outcomes between SES and ZES in either subgroup. In conclusion, at 10 years, SES and ZES performed similarly in patients with and without diabetes. Although coronary revascularization was more prevalent in diabetes patients with ZES, this may, in part, have been related to the angiographic follow-up that was offered to a subgroup of diabetes patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amjcard.2019.10.042DOI Listing
February 2020

16-year follow-up of the Danish Acute Myocardial Infarction 2 (DANAMI-2) trial: primary percutaneous coronary intervention vs. fibrinolysis in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction.

Eur Heart J 2020 02;41(7):847-854

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Palle Juul-Jensens Boulevard 99, 8200 Aarhus N, Denmark.

Aims: The DANish Acute Myocardial Infarction 2 (DANAMI-2) trial found that interhospital transport to primary percutaneous coronary intervention (pPCI) was superior to fibrinolysis at the local hospital in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) at 30 days. The present study investigates the 16-year cardiovascular outcomes.

Methods And Results: We randomized 1572 STEMI patients to pPCI or fibrinolysis at 24 referral hospitals and 5 invasive centres in Denmark. Patients randomized to pPCI at referral hospitals were immediately transported to the nearest invasive centre. The main endpoint of the current study was a composite of death or rehospitalization for myocardial infarction (MI). Outcome information beyond 3 years was obtained through Danish health registries. After 16 years, pPCI-treated patients had a sustained lower rate of composite endpoint compared to patients treated with fibrinolysis in the overall cohort [58.7% vs. 62.3%; hazard ratio (HR) 0.86, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.76-0.98], and among patients transported for pPCI (58.7% vs. 64.1%; HR 0.82, 95% CI 0.71-0.96). No difference in all-cause mortality was found, but cardiac mortality was reduced by an absolute of 4.4% in favour of pPCI (18.3% vs. 22.7%; HR 0.78, 95% CI 0.63-0.98). pPCI postponed a main event with 12.3 months in average compared to fibrinolysis (95% CI 5.0-19.5).

Conclusion: The benefit of pPCI over fibrinolysis was maintained at 16-year follow-up. pPCI reduced the composite endpoint of death or rehospitalization for MI, reduced cardiac mortality, and delayed average time to a main event by approximately 1 year.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehz595DOI Listing
February 2020

Derivation and Validation of a Chronic Total Coronary Occlusion Intervention Procedural Success Score From the 20,000-Patient EuroCTO Registry: The EuroCTO (CASTLE) Score.

JACC Cardiovasc Interv 2019 02 30;12(4):335-342. Epub 2019 Jan 30.

Sussex Cardiac Centre, Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals, Brighton, United Kingdom. Electronic address:

Objectives: The aim was to establish a contemporary scoring system to predict the outcome of chronic total occlusion coronary angioplasty.

Background: Interventional treatment of chronic total coronary occlusions (CTOs) is a developing subspecialty. Predictors of technical success or failure have been derived from datasets of modest size. A robust scoring tool could facilitate case selection and inform decision making.

Methods: The study analyzed data from the EuroCTO registry. This prospective database was set up in 2008 and includes >20,000 cases submitted by CTO expert operators (>50 cases/year). Derivation (n = 14,882) and validation (n = 5,745) datasets were created to develop a risk score for predicting technical failure.

Results: There were 14,882 patients in the derivation dataset (with 2,356 [15.5%] failures) and 5,745 in the validation dataset (with 703 [12.2%] failures). A total of 20.2% of cases were done retrogradely, and dissection re-entry was performed in 9.3% of cases. We identified 6 predictors of technical failure, collectively forming the CASTLE score (Coronary artery bypass graft history, Age (≥70 years), Stump anatomy [blunt or invisible], Tortuosity degree [severe or unseen], Length of occlusion [≥20 mm], and Extent of calcification [severe]). When each parameter was assigned a value of 1, technical failure was seen to increase from 8% with a CASTLE score of 0 to 1, to 35% with a score ≥4. The area under the curve (AUC) was similar in both the derivation (AUC: 0.66) and validation (AUC: 0.68) datasets.

Conclusions: The EuroCTO (CASTLE) score is derived from the largest database of CTO cases to date and offers a useful tool for predicting procedural outcome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcin.2018.11.020DOI Listing
February 2019

Ten-year clinical outcome of patients treated with a drug-eluting stent in the proximal left anterior descending artery segment compared with patients stented in other non-left main coronary segments.

EuroIntervention 2018 Sep;14(7):764-771

Department of Cardiology, Zealand University Hospital, Roskilde, Denmark.

Aims: The aim of the study was to determine whether patients treated with drug-eluting stents in the proximal left anterior descending artery (LAD) carried a different long-term prognosis from patients treated in other coronary artery segments.

Methods And Results: Ten-year clinical outcome expressed as all-cause mortality and major adverse cardiac events (MACE: cardiac death, acute myocardial infarction, or target vessel revascularisation) was determined for 1,479 patients with a single non-left main coronary stenosis treated with a first-generation drug-eluting stent in the SORT OUT II trial. The outcome of patients treated with stents in the proximal LAD (n=365) was compared with that of patients treated in a non-proximal LAD segment (n=1,114). Follow-up was 99.3% complete. All-cause mortality was 24.9% in the proximal LAD group vs. 26.3% in the non-proximal LAD group (p=0.60). MACE occurred less frequently in the proximal LAD group, 24.6% vs. 31.0% with a hazard ratio of 0.77 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.61-0.97, p=0.024). After multivariate analysis which included baseline characteristics that were unevenly distributed between the groups, the hazard ratio for MACE was 0.82 (95% CI: 0.65-1.03, p=0.09).

Conclusions: Patients treated with a drug-eluting stent in the proximal LAD have similar, if not better, long-term clinical outcome compared with patients stented in other coronary artery segments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4244/EIJ-D-18-00396DOI Listing
September 2018

All-cause mortality and major cardiovascular outcomes comparing percutaneous coronary angioplasty versus coronary artery bypass grafting in the treatment of unprotected left main stenosis: a meta-analysis of short-term and long-term randomised trials.

Open Heart 2017;4(2):e000638. Epub 2017 Dec 10.

Division of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine, Oulu University Hospital, Oulu, Finland.

Objective: We compared percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) for the treatment of left main coronary artery (LMCA) disease by conducting a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials (RCTs).

Methods: RCTs of PCI versus CABG in patients with LMCA stenosis were identified from MEDLINE, the Cochrane Library and search of bibliographies to November 2016. Study-specific HRs with 95% CIs were aggregated for all-cause mortality, major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events (MACCE), and other cardiovascular events at time points of 30 days, 1 year and 3 years and beyond.

Results: Six RCTs comprising 4700 patients were included. There were no significant differences in risk of all-cause mortality in pooled analysis of relevant trials at 30 days (0.61, 95% CI 0.27 to 1.36), 1 year (0.66, 95% CI 0.42 to 1.04), and 3 years and beyond (1.04, 95% CI 0.81 to 1.33), comparing PCI with CABG. There was no significant difference in the risk of MACCE at 30 days (0.72, 95% CI 0.51 to 1.03) and 1 year (1.16, 95% CI 0.94 to 1.44); however, PCI was associated with a higher risk of MACCE compared with CABG during longer-term follow-up (1.27, 95% CI 1.12 to 1.44). Composite outcome of death, stroke or myocardial infarction was lower with PCI at 30 days (0.67, 95% CI 0.49 to 0.92). Repeat revascularisation was increased at 1 year and at 3 years and beyond for PCI.

Conclusions: All-cause mortality rates are not significantly different between PCI and CABG at short-term and long-term follow-up. However, PCI is associated with a reduction in the risk of major cardiovascular outcomes at short-term follow-up in patients with LMCA stenosis; but at long term, MACCE rate is increased for PCI.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/openhrt-2017-000638DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5729300PMC
December 2017

Intravascular ultrasound assessment of minimum lumen area and intimal hyperplasia in in-stent restenosis after drug-eluting or bare-metal stent implantation. The Nordic Intravascular Ultrasound Study (NIVUS).

Cardiovasc Revasc Med 2017 Dec 12;18(8):577-582. Epub 2017 May 12.

Heart Center, Tampere University Hospital, Tampere, Finland.

Introduction: Drug-eluting stents (DES) reduce the risk of restenosis after percutaneous coronary intervention. The aim of the study was to evaluate, by intravascular ultrasound (IVUS), the minimum lumen area site in the stented segment and the distribution of intimal hyperplasia in patients presenting with a DES or bare-metal stent (BMS) in-stent restenosis.

Methods: The "Nordic Intravascular Ultrasound Study (NIVUS)" study was conducted in Nordic and Baltic countries as a prospective multicenter registry. Two hundred nine patients (DES n=121 and BMS n=88) with in-stent restenosis were enrolled.

Results: At the minimum lumen area site in the stented segment, the stent area (5.8±2.2mm vs. 7.6±2.4mm, p<0.001) and intimal hyperplasia area (2.6±2.0mm vs. 5.0±2.2mm, p<0.001) were significantly lower in patients treated with DES compared to BMS. The percentage of stents that did not have a minimum stent area of at least 5.0mm (under expansion) was higher in DES (58.7% vs. 37.7%, p=0.008) compared to BMS. Intimal hyperplasia covered 55.4±33.3% of the stent length in the DES compared to 90.7±17.4% in the BMS group, p<0.001. Focal in-stent restenosis was more often seen in DES treated patients compared to BMS treated patients (DES n=84 (59.9%) vs. BMS n=15 (17.0%), p<0.001).

Conclusion: Stent underexpansion was more often seen in DES than BMS in-stent restenosis. DES more often had focal in-stent restenosis with less intimal hyperplasia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.carrev.2017.05.010DOI Listing
December 2017

Clinical outcomes with percutaneous coronary revascularization vs coronary artery bypass grafting surgery in patients with unprotected left main coronary artery disease: A meta-analysis of 6 randomized trials and 4,686 patients.

Am Heart J 2017 Aug 18;190:54-63. Epub 2017 May 18.

Columbia University Medical Center and the Cardiovascular Research Foundation, New York, NY. Electronic address:

Some but not all randomized controlled trials (RCT) have suggested that percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with drug-eluting stents may be an acceptable alternative to coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery for the treatment of unprotected left main coronary artery disease (ULMCAD). We therefore aimed to compare the risk of all-cause mortality between PCI and CABG in patients with ULMCAD in a pairwise meta-analysis of RCT.

Methods: Randomized controlled trials comparing PCI vs CABG for the treatment of ULMCAD were searched through MEDLINE, EMBASE, Cochrane databases, and proceedings of international meetings.

Results: Six trials including 4,686 randomized patients were identified. After a median follow-up of 39 months, there were no significant differences between PCI vs CABG in the risk of all-cause mortality (hazard ratio [HR] 0.99, 95% CI 0.76-1.30) or cardiac mortality. However, a significant interaction for cardiac mortality (P= .03) was apparent between randomization arm and SYNTAX score, such that the relative risk for mortality tended to be lower with PCI compared with CABG among patients in the lower SYNTAX score tertile, similar in the intermediate tertile, and higher in the upper SYNTAX score tertile. Percutaneous coronary intervention compared with CABG was associated with a similar long-term composite risk of death, myocardial infarction, or stroke (HR 1.06, 95% CI 0.82-1.37), with fewer events within 30 days after PCI offset by fewer events after 30 days with CABG (P < .0001). Percutaneous coronary intervention was associated with greater rates of unplanned revascularization compared with CABG (HR 1.74, 95% CI 1.47-2.07).

Conclusions: In patients undergoing revascularization for ULMCAD, PCI was associated with similar rates of mortality compared with CABG at a median follow-up of 39 months, but with an interaction effect suggesting relatively lower mortality with PCI in patients with low SYNTAX score and relatively lower mortality with CABG in patients with high SYNTAX score. Both procedures resulted in similar long-term composite rates of death, myocardial infarction, or stroke, with PCI offering an early safety advantage and CABG demonstrating greater durability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ahj.2017.05.005DOI Listing
August 2017

Stents versus bypass surgery for left main stem stenosis - Authors' reply.

Lancet 2017 04;389(10079):1609

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, DK-8200 Aarhus, Denmark.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(17)31022-XDOI Listing
April 2017

Chronic total coronary occlusion: treatment results.

Scand Cardiovasc J 2017 Aug 20;51(4):197-201. Epub 2017 Apr 20.

a Department of Cardiology , Aalborg University Hospital , Aalborg , Denmark.

Objectives: To describe the clinical and procedural coronary chronic total occlusion (CTO) treatment results in a Nordic PCI centre during the implementation of a CTO treatment program.

Design: In a retrospective registry study, we assessed; (1) indication for the procedure, (2) Canadian Cardiovascular Society angina pectoris score (CCS)/New York Heart Association (NYHA) heart failure score, (3) lesion complexity and (4) adverse events during hospital stay and three months following the index procedure.

Results: The study cohort included 503 patients (594 lesions). From 2010 to 2013 96% of procedures were performed with antegrade wire-escalation technique and 4% performed using retrograde techniques, from 2013-2016 the corresponding numbers were 83% and 17.0%. The procedural success rate was 69%, increasing from 64% before to 72% (p = .06) after routinely using the retrograde approach. No individual patient characteristic, lesion variable or score was strongly associated with procedural success or failure. There were 4% serious procedure related complications. In patients with PCI of a CTO lesion only, 87% were in CCS or NYHA functional class ≥2 before the index procedure vs. 22% at follow-up.

Conclusions: Routine use of retrograde techniques tended to increase the procedural success rate. Clinical results after three months were acceptable, but the complication rate was higher than for non-CTO PCI. Individual patient and lesion characteristics had a low predictability for procedural success. Therefore, clinical symptoms, objective signs of myocardial ischemia and procedural risk should be focus points in coronary chronic total occlusion treatment strategies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14017431.2017.1319575DOI Listing
August 2017

10-Year Clinical Outcome After Randomization to Treatment by Sirolimus- or Paclitaxel-Eluting Coronary Stents.

J Am Coll Cardiol 2017 Feb;69(6):616-624

Department of Cardiology, Copenhagen University Hospital, Bispebjerg, Denmark.

Background: First-generation drug-eluting coronary stents (DES) were introduced in 2003 to 2004, and their use resulted in a considerable reduction in the development of in-stent restenosis at the cost of an increased risk of late stent thromboses.

Objectives: This study followed clinical outcomes of patients included in a large randomized trial for 10 years to enable detection of late changes in annual event rates that could necessitate medical attention.

Methods: A total of 2,098 unselected all-comer patients (50% with acute coronary syndrome) were randomly assigned to have a first-generation DES implanted. This study recorded the occurrence of a major adverse cardiac event (MACE) assessed as the composite of cardiac death, myocardial infarction, and target vessel revascularization. Stent thromboses were also assessed.

Results: Of the 2,098 unselected patients, 73.1% were still alive after 10 years. During the follow-up period, MACE occurred in 346 (32.5%) in the group receiving a sirolimus-eluting stent and in 342 (33.1%) in the group receiving a paclitaxel-eluting stent (hazard ratio: 0.96; 95% confidence interval: 0.83 to 1.11; p = 0.60), with a steady annual rate of 2.6% after the first year. Definite, probable, and possible stent thrombosis appeared in 279 patients (13.3%), with no difference between stent types and with a steady annual rate of 1.3% after the first year.

Conclusions: Among the surviving patients, the long-term annual MACE rate and the stent thrombosis rate appeared constant for both stent types, with no apparent late changes. Although there is no need for extraordinary medical attention for these patients, the absence of declines in annual event rates calls for continuous surveillance. (Danish Organization on Randomized Trials With Clinical Outcome II [SORT OUT II]; NCT00388934).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jacc.2016.11.055DOI Listing
February 2017

Comparison of Durable-Polymer Zotarolimus-Eluting and Biodegradable-Polymer Biolimus-Eluting Coronary Stents in Patients With Coronary Artery Disease: 3-Year Clinical Outcomes in the Randomized SORT OUT VI Trial.

JACC Cardiovasc Interv 2017 02 18;10(3):255-264. Epub 2017 Jan 18.

Department of Cardiology, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark.

Objectives: The authors sought to compare the safety and efficacy of the biocompatible durable-polymer zotarolimus-eluting stent with the biodegradable-polymer biolimus-eluting stent in unselected coronary patients.

Background: Biodegradable-polymer biolimus-eluting stents are superior to first-generation durable-polymer drug-eluting stents in long-term randomized all-comer trials. Long-term data comparing them to second-generation durable-polymer drug-eluting stents are lacking.

Methods: The study was a randomized, multicenter, all-comer, noninferiority trial in patients with chronic stable coronary artery disease or acute coronary syndromes and at least 1 coronary artery lesion requiring treatment with a drug-eluting stent. Endpoints included major adverse cardiac events (MACE), a composite of safety (cardiac death and myocardial infarction not clearly attributable to a non-target lesion) and efficacy (target lesion revascularization); the individual endpoints of MACE; all-cause mortality; any myocardial infarction; target vessel revascularization; and definite or probable stent thrombosis at 36 months.

Results: From March 2011 to August 2012, 2,999 patients were randomly assigned (1:1) to receive either the zotarolimus-eluting (1,502 patients) or the biolimus-eluting (1,497 patients) stent. At 3-year follow-up, MACE occurred in 128 (8.6%) patients assigned to the durable-polymer zotarolimus-eluting stent and in 144 (9.6%) assigned to the biodegradable-polymer biolimus-eluting stent (p = 0.36). Occurrence of cardiac death (2.7% vs. 3.4%), myocardial infarction not clearly attributable to a non-target lesion (2.7% vs. 2.5%), and target lesion revascularization (5.4% vs. 5.5%) did not differ significantly between the 2 groups. Definite very late stent thrombosis occurred in 6 (0.4%) patients assigned to the durable-polymer zotarolimus-eluting stent and in 10 (0.7%) assigned to the biodegradable-polymer biolimus-eluting stent (p = 0.33).

Conclusions: At 3-year follow-up, the durable-polymer zotarolimus-eluting stent and the biodegradable-polymer biolimus-eluting stent were similar in clinical outcome, with no significant difference in safety and efficacy outcomes, including stent thrombosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcin.2016.11.007DOI Listing
February 2017

Percutaneous coronary angioplasty versus coronary artery bypass grafting in treatment of unprotected left main stenosis (NOBLE): a prospective, randomised, open-label, non-inferiority trial.

Lancet 2016 12 31;388(10061):2743-2752. Epub 2016 Oct 31.

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, Aarhus, Denmark. Electronic address:

Background: Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) is the standard treatment for revascularisation in patients with left main coronary artery disease, but use of percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) for this indication is increasing. We aimed to compare PCI and CABG for treatment of left main coronary artery disease.

Methods: In this prospective, randomised, open-label, non-inferiority trial, patients with left main coronary artery disease were enrolled in 36 centres in northern Europe and randomised 1:1 to treatment with PCI or CABG. Eligible patients had stable angina pectoris, unstable angina pectoris, or non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction. Exclusion criteria were ST-elevation myocardial infarction within 24 h, being considered too high risk for CABG or PCI, or expected survival of less than 1 year. The primary endpoint was major adverse cardiac or cerebrovascular events (MACCE), a composite of all-cause mortality, non-procedural myocardial infarction, any repeat coronary revascularisation, and stroke. Non-inferiority of PCI to CABG required the lower end of the 95% CI not to exceed a hazard ratio (HR) of 1·35 after up to 5 years of follow-up. The intention-to-treat principle was used in the analysis if not specified otherwise. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov identifier, number NCT01496651.

Findings: Between Dec 9, 2008, and Jan 21, 2015, 1201 patients were randomly assigned, 598 to PCI and 603 to CABG, and 592 in each group entered analysis by intention to treat. Kaplan-Meier 5 year estimates of MACCE were 29% for PCI (121 events) and 19% for CABG (81 events), HR 1·48 (95% CI 1·11-1·96), exceeding the limit for non-inferiority, and CABG was significantly better than PCI (p=0·0066). As-treated estimates were 28% versus 19% (1·55, 1·18-2·04, p=0·0015). Comparing PCI with CABG, 5 year estimates were 12% versus 9% (1·07, 0·67-1·72, p=0·77) for all-cause mortality, 7% versus 2% (2·88, 1·40-5·90, p=0·0040) for non-procedural myocardial infarction, 16% versus 10% (1·50, 1·04-2·17, p=0·032) for any revascularisation, and 5% versus 2% (2·25, 0·93-5·48, p=0·073) for stroke.

Interpretation: The findings of this study suggest that CABG might be better than PCI for treatment of left main stem coronary artery disease.

Funding: Biosensors, Aarhus University Hospital, and participating sites.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)32052-9DOI Listing
December 2016

Coronary bifurcation lesions treated with simple or complex stenting: 5-year survival from patient-level pooled analysis of the Nordic Bifurcation Study and the British Bifurcation Coronary Study.

Eur Heart J 2016 Jun 8;37(24):1923-8. Epub 2016 May 8.

Sussex Cardiac Centre, Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals, Brighton, UK.

Aims: Randomized trials of coronary bifurcation stenting have shown better outcomes from a simple (provisional) strategy rather than a complex (planned two-stent) strategy in terms of short-term efficacy and safety. Here, we report the 5-year all-cause mortality based on pooled patient-level data from two large bifurcation coronary stenting trials with similar methodology: the Nordic Bifurcation Study (NORDIC I) and the British Bifurcation Coronary Study: old, new, and evolving strategies (BBC ONE).

Methods And Results: Both multicentre randomized trials compared simple (provisional T-stenting) vs. complex (culotte, crush, and T-stenting) techniques, using drug-eluting stents. We analysed all-cause death at 5 years. Data were collected from phone follow-up, hospital records, and national mortality tracking. Follow-up was complete for 890 out of 913 patients (97%). Both Simple and Complex groups were similar in terms of patient and lesion characteristics. Five-year mortality was lower among patients who underwent a simple strategy rather than a complex strategy [17 patients (3.8%) vs. 31 patients (7.0%); P = 0.04].

Conclusion: For coronary bifurcation lesions, a provisional single-stent approach appears to be associated with lower long-term mortality than a systematic dual stenting technique.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehw170DOI Listing
June 2016

Impact of the Everolimus-eluting Bioresorbable Scaffold in Coronary Atherosclerosis.

Rev Esp Cardiol (Engl Ed) 2016 Feb 28;69(2):109-16. Epub 2015 Dec 28.

International Centre for Circulatory Health, NHLI, Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom.

Introduction And Objectives: The Absorb bioresorbable vascular scaffold has been shown to decrease total plaque areas in the treated segment. However, it is unknown whether plaque size is modified in scaffolded segments only or whether the modification extends to other coronary segments.

Methods: Absorb Cohort A is a single-arm, prospective study, with safety and imaging endpoints, in which 30 patients underwent percutaneous coronary intervention with the first generation Absorb bioresorbable vascular scaffold. Noninvasive multislice computed tomography imaging was performed in 18 patients at 18 months and 5 years of follow-up. The present study was an intrapatient comparison of matched segments (normalized by the segment length) of the scaffolded region with nonintervened segments for lumen volume, vessel volume, plaque volume, plaque burden, and percent change in plaque atheroma volume.

Results: All 18 scaffolded segments could be analyzed. In the nonintervened segments, 1 of 72 segments had a motion artifact and was excluded. Serial comparison showed that the scaffolded segments showed no significant change in the mean plaque burden, total atheroma volume, total lumen volume, or vessel volume between 18 months and 5 years. Conversely, the untreated segments showed a significant increase in plaque burden (2.7 ± 6.5%; P < .01) and normalized plaque volumes (8.0 ± 22.8mm(3); P < .01). This resulted in a significant difference in plaque burden between scaffolded and nonintervened segments (P = .03).

Conclusions: In this small series, the Absorb bioresorbable vascular scaffold showed the potential to provide an additional benefit to pharmacological therapy in locally reducing progression of percent plaque burden. These findings need to be confirmed in larger studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.rec.2015.07.027DOI Listing
February 2016

One-year clinical and angiographic results of hybrid coronary revascularization.

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2015 Nov 28;150(5):1181-6. Epub 2015 Aug 28.

Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

Objective: To evaluate 1-year clinical and angiographic results after hybrid coronary revascularization (HCR) combining off-pump left internal mammary artery (LIMA) grafting through an inferior J-hemisternotomy with percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI).

Methods: Prospective, single-arm clinical feasibility study including 100 consecutive patients with multivessel disease undergoing staged HCR. The primary endpoint was the major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular event rate at 1 year. Secondary endpoints included 1-year all-cause death, stroke, myocardial infarction, repeat revascularization, and angiographic graft and stent patency.

Results: One-year clinical follow-up data were available in all patients. The primary endpoint was met by 20 patients (20%). Individual endpoints were as follows: 1 death due to heart failure; 1 stroke, 2 procedure-related myocardial infarctions; and 1 spontaneous myocardial infarction during follow-up. A total of 16 patients underwent repeat revascularization: 5 surgical reinterventions during the index hospitalization for angiographically suspected internal mammary artery graft dysfunction, and 3 repeat PCIs. Only 1 patient had evidence of ischemia. After discharge, PCI was performed in 6 patients who had recurrent angina, and in 2 asymptomatic patients who had angiographic restenosis. At the 1-year angiographic follow-up, 87 of 89 (98%) patients had patent internal mammary artery grafts. Angiographic restenosis was present in 10 of 100 lesions treated by PCI.

Conclusions: Angiographically controlled HCR was associated with a high repeat revascularization rate. The 1-year 98% LIMA-graft patency rate, and low risk of death and stroke, seem promising for the long-term outcome. Non-left anterior descending coronary artery lesion revascularization remains a challenge.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcvs.2015.08.072DOI Listing
November 2015

Unmatched Results After Double Kissing Crush Stenting Technique in Distal Left Main Coronary Artery Treatment?

JACC Cardiovasc Interv 2015 Aug;8(10):1343-5

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, Aarhus, Denmark.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcin.2015.07.002DOI Listing
August 2015

Influence of multivessel disease with or without additional revascularization on mortality in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction.

Am Heart J 2015 Jul 2;170(1):70-8. Epub 2015 Apr 2.

Department of Cardiology, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark.

Background: In patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), timely reperfusion with primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is the preferred treatment. In primary PCI patients with multivessel disease, it is unclear whether culprit vessel PCI only is the preferred treatment. We compared mortality among (1) STEMI patients with single-vessel disease and those with multivessel disease and (2) multivessel disease patients with and without additional revascularization of nonculprit lesions within 2 months after the index PCI.

Methods: From January 2002 to June 2009, all patients presenting with STEMI and treated with primary PCI were identified from the Western Denmark Heart Registry, which covers a population of 3.0 million. The hazard ratio (HR) for death was estimated using a Cox regression model, controlling for potential confounding.

Results: The study cohort consisted of 8,822 patients: 4,770 (54.1%) had single-vessel disease and 4,052 (45.9%) had multivessel disease. Overall, 1-year cumulative mortality was 7.6%, and 7-year cumulative mortality was 24.0%. Multivessel disease was associated with higher 7-year mortality (adjusted HR 1.45 [95% CI 1.30-1.62], P < .001). Among patients with multivessel disease, lack of additional revascularization beyond the culprit lesion was associated with higher 7-year mortality (adjusted HR 1.50 [95% CI 1.25-1.80], P < .001). In patients with multivessel disease who underwent additional revascularization, 7-year mortality (adjusted HR 1.01 [95% CI 0.84-1.22], P = .89) was similar compared to patients with single-vessel disease.

Conclusion: In STEMI patients, multivessel disease was associated with a higher mortality compared to single-vessel disease. In multivessel disease patients, additional revascularization was associated with a higher survival compared with culprit vessel PCI only.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ahj.2015.03.020DOI Listing
July 2015

Retrograde Recanalization of Chronic Total Occlusions in Europe: Procedural, In-Hospital, and Long-Term Outcomes From the Multicenter ERCTO Registry.

J Am Coll Cardiol 2015 Jun;65(22):2388-400

Department of Cardiology, Main Taunus Hospitals, Bad Soden University of Frankfurt, Frankfurt, Germany.

Background: A retrograde approach improves the success rate of percutaneous coronary interventions (PCIs) for chronic total occlusions (CTOs).

Objectives: The authors describe the European experience with and outcomes of retrograde PCI revascularization for coronary CTOs.

Methods: Follow-up data were collected from 1,395 patients with 1,582 CTO lesions enrolled between January 2008 and December 2012 for retrograde CTO PCI at 44 European centers. Major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events were defined as the composite of cardiac death, myocardial infarction, stroke, and further revascularization.

Results: The mean patient age was 62.0 ± 10.4 years; 88.5% were men. Procedural and clinical success rates were 75.3% and 71.2%, respectively. The mean clinical follow-up duration was 24.7 ± 15.0 months. Compared with patients with failed retrograde PCI, successfully revascularized patients showed lower rates of cardiac death (0.6% vs. 4.3%, respectively; p < 0.001), myocardial infarction (2.3% vs. 5.4%, respectively; p = 0.001), further revascularization (8.6% vs. 23.6%, respectively; p < 0.001), and major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events (8.7% vs. 23.9%, respectively; p < 0.001). Female sex (hazard ratio [HR]: 2.06; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.33 to 3.18; p = 0.001), prior PCI (HR: 1.73; 95% CI: 1.16 to 2.60; p = 0.011), low left ventricular ejection fraction (HR: 2.43; 95% CI: 1.22 to 4.83; p = 0.011), J-CTO (Multicenter CTO Registry in Japan) score ≥3 (HR: 2.08; 95% CI: 1.32 to 3.27; p = 0.002), and procedural failure (HR: 2.48; 95% CI: 1.72 to 3.57; p < 0.001) were independent predictors of major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events at long-term follow-up.

Conclusions: The number of retrograde procedures in Europe has increased, with high percents of success, low rates of major complications, and good long-term outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jacc.2015.03.566DOI Listing
June 2015

Coronary bifurcation lesions: Present status and future perspectives.

Int J Cardiol 2015 18;187:48-57. Epub 2015 Mar 18.

Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark.

Coronary bifurcation lesions (CBLs) are challenging and associated with a higher rate of adverse events than non-bifurcation lesions. In the era of drug-eluting stents, 2 primary interventional strategies for treating CBL include the complex strategy the main vessel (MV) and side-branch (SB) stenting, and the simple strategy MV stenting combined with provisional SB stenting. The meta-analysis of the simple vs. complex strategies demonstrated an increased incidence of myocardial infarction in the complex strategy. Likewise, the Tryton dedicated bifurcation stents, as compared with the simple strategy, increased the rate of myocardial infarction. In contrast, the Nordic-Baltic Bifurcation Study IV demonstrated that event rates were not significantly different comparing the simple vs. complex strategies in true bifurcation lesions involving a large SB. Fractional flow reserve (FFR) has emerged as a powerful catheter based tool for the functional assessment of a stenosis, but the role of FFR on the long-term outcomes of patients with CBL has not been studied. Given the recent evidence that Tryton stents (a dedicated bifurcation stent) increased event rates, and the lack of benefit from using 2-stent techniques (the Nordic Baltic Bifurcation Study IV) in true CBL, assessing the FFR of the SB seems now of outmost importance, but randomized data are lacking. An intravascular study showed that kissing balloon inflation (KBI) significantly reduced SB stenosis, restored stent lumen at the carina, and expanded stent in the proximal segment. However, a recent randomized study showed no significant benefit of routine KBI. This review highlights current concepts and future perspectives in patients with CBL.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijcard.2015.03.183DOI Listing
February 2016

Zotarolimus-eluting durable-polymer-coated stent versus a biolimus-eluting biodegradable-polymer-coated stent in unselected patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (SORT OUT VI): a randomised non-inferiority trial.

Lancet 2015 Apr 16;385(9977):1527-35. Epub 2015 Jan 16.

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, Aarhus, Denmark.

Background: New-generation drug-eluting coronary stents have reduced the risk of coronary events, especially in patients with complex disease or lesions. To what extent different stent platforms, polymers, and antiproliferative drugs affect outcomes, however, is unclear. We investigated the safety and efficacy of a third-generation stent by comparing a highly biocompatible durable-polymer-coated zotarolimus-eluting stent with a biodegradable-polymer-coated biolimus-eluting stent.

Methods: This open-label, randomised, multicentre, non-inferiority trial was done at three sites across western Denmark. All patients who presented with stable coronary artery disease or acute coronary syndromes and at least one coronary artery lesion (more than 50% stenosis) from March, 2011, to August, 2012, were assessed for eligibility. Patients were randomly assigned in a 1:1 ratio to receive either the durable-polymer zotarolimus-eluting stent or the biodegradable-polymer biolimus-eluting stent. The primary endpoint was a composite of safety (cardiac death and myocardial infarction not clearly attributable to a non-target lesion) and efficacy (target-lesion revascularisation) at 12 months, analysed by intention to treat. The trial was powered to assess non-inferiority of durable-polymer zotarolimus-eluting stent compared with the biodegradable-polymer biolimus-eluting stent with a predetermined non-inferiority margin of 0·025. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01956448.

Findings: Of 7103 screened, 1502 patients with 1883 lesions were assigned to receive the durable-polymer zotarolimus-eluting stent and 1497 patients with 1791 lesions to receive the biodegradable-polymer biolimus-eluting stent. 79 (5·3%) and 75 (5·0%) patients, respectively, met the primary endpoint (absolute risk difference 0·0025, upper limit of one-sided 95% CI 0·016%; p=0·004). The individual components of the primary endpoint did not differ significantly between stent types at 12 months.

Interpretation: The durable-polymer-coated zotarolimus-eluting stent was non-inferior to the biodegradable-polymer-coated biolimus-eluting stent in unselected patients.

Funding: Medtronic Cardiovascular and Biosensors Interventional Technologies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(14)61794-3DOI Listing
April 2015

Stent thrombosis is the primary cause of ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction following coronary stent implantation: a five year follow-up of the SORT OUT II study.

PLoS One 2014 19;9(11):e113399. Epub 2014 Nov 19.

Department of Medicine, Copenhagen University Hospital Glostrup, Glostrup, Denmark.

Background: The widespread use of coronary stents has exposed a growing population to the risk of stent thrombosis, but the importance in terms of risk of ST-segment elevation myocardial infarctions (STEMIs) remains unclear.

Methods: We studied five years follow-up data for 2,098 all-comer patients treated with coronary stents in the randomized SORT OUT II trial (mean age 63.6 yrs. 74.8% men). Patients who following stent implantation were readmitted with STEMI were included and each patient was categorized ranging from definite- to ruled-out stent thrombosis according to the Academic Research Consortium definitions. Multivariate logistic regression was performed on selected covariates to assess odds ratios (ORs) for definite stent thrombosis.

Results: 85 patients (4.1%), mean age 62.7 years, 77.1% men, were admitted with a total of 96 STEMIs, of whom 60 (62.5%) had definite stent thrombosis. Notably, definite stent thrombosis was more frequent in female than male STEMI patients (81.8% vs. 56.8%, p =  .09), and in very late STEMIs (p = 0.06). Female sex (OR 3.53 [1.01-12.59]) and clopidogrel (OR 4.43 [1.03-19.01]) was associated with increased for definite stent thrombosis, whereas age, time since stent implantation, use of statins, initial PCI urgency (STEMI [primary PCI], NSTEMI/unstable angina [subacute PCI] or stable angina [elective PCI]), and glucose-lowering agents did not seem to influence risk of stent thrombosis.

Conclusion: In a contemporary cohort of coronary stented patients, stent thrombosis was evident in more than 60% of subsequent STEMIs.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0113399PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4237454PMC
December 2015

Clopidogrel discontinuation within the first year after coronary drug-eluting stent implantation: an observational study.

BMC Cardiovasc Disord 2014 Aug 13;14:100. Epub 2014 Aug 13.

Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

Background: The impact of adherence to the recommended duration of dual antiplatelet therapy after first generation drug-eluting stent implantation is difficult to assess in real-world settings and limited data are available.

Methods: We followed 4,154 patients treated with coronary drug-eluting stents in Western Denmark for 1 year and obtained data on redeemed clopidogrel prescriptions and major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE, i.e., cardiac death, myocardial infarction, or stent thrombosis) from medical databases.

Results: Discontinuation of clopidogrel within the first 3 months after stent implantation was associated with a significantly increased rate of MACE at 1-year follow-up (hazard ratio (HR) 2.06; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.08-3.93). Discontinuation 3-6 months (HR 1.29; 95% CI: 0.70-2.41) and 6-12 months (HR 1.29; 95% CI: 0.54-3.07) after stent implantation were associated with smaller, not statistically significant, increases in MACE rates. Among patients who discontinued clopidogrel, MACE rates were highest within the first 2 months after discontinuation.

Conclusions: Discontinuation of clopidogrel was associated with an increased rate of MACE among patients treated with drug-eluting stents. The increase was statistically significant within the first 3 months after drug-eluting stent implantation but not after 3 to 12 months.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2261-14-100DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4135343PMC
August 2014

The impact of distal embolization and distal protection on long-term outcome in patients with ST elevation myocardial infarction randomized to primary percutaneous coronary intervention--results from a randomized study.

Eur Heart J Acute Cardiovasc Care 2015 Apr 10;4(2):180-8. Epub 2014 Jul 10.

Department of Cardiology, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.

Objectives: The impact of angiographically visible distal embolization (DE) and distal protection occurring during primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) on long-term outcome has not been studied in a contemporary ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) cohort. To evaluate the association between DE and long-term outcome in STEMI patients treated with primary PCI with or without distal protection.

Methods And Results: In this post-hoc analysis of a randomized study, 591 STEMI patients were randomized to conventional primary PCI or primary PCI with distal protection and followed for 5 years. There was no statistically significant difference in MACE rate between patients treated with or wthout distal protection (19% versus 25%; p=0.10). There seemed to be interaction between distal protection and DE in major adverse cardiac events (MACE) (p=0.08), mortality (p=0.02) and reinfarction (p=0.06), but not admission for heart failure (p=0.40). DE was related to increased risk of admission for heart failure independently of distal protection (12.0% versus 5.0; p=0.015). The MACE rate for patients treated with standard PCI with DE was 31.3% compared to 24.8% for patients without DE (p=0.30), and 44.4% for patients treated with distal protection with DE compared to 17.9% for patients without DE (p=0.005). DE was not related to mortality (p=0.52) or reinfarction (p=0.52) among patients treated with standard PCI, but was related to higher rates of mortality (p=0.012) and reinfarction (p=0.008) when distal protection was used.

Conclusion: DE occurred in 11% of STEMI patients treated with conventional primary PCI, and was associated with increased risk of development of heart failure. Distal protection did not improve the 5-years MACE rate, and might even aggravate the prognosis following DE, but this should only be considered hypothesis-generating.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2048872614543780DOI Listing
April 2015

Paclitaxel-eluting versus bare metal stents in primary PCI: a pooled patient-level meta-analysis of randomized trials.

J Thromb Thrombolysis 2015 Jan;39(1):101-12

Division of Cardiology, Ospedale "Maggiore della Carità", Eastern Piedmont University, C.so Mazzini, 18, 24100, Novara, Italy,

Concerns have emerged regarding a higher risk of stent thrombosis after drug-eluting stent (DES) implantation, especially in the setting of ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). Therefore, we performed a meta-analysis based on individual patient data to evaluate long-term safety and effectiveness of paclitaxel-eluting stent (PES) as compared to bare metal stents (BMS) in patients undergoing primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) for STEMI. We examined all completed randomized trials on PES for STEMI. Individual patient data were obtained from six trials. We performed survival analyses with the use of Cox-regression analysis stratified according to trial. Kaplan-Meier survival curves are presented with event rates reported as estimated probabilities. A subsequent landmark analysis was performed for patients who were event-free at 1-year follow-up in order to define outcome in terms of early (≤1 year) and late (>1 year) events. A total of six trials were finally included in the meta-analysis with 4435 patients, 2875 (64.8 %) assigned to PES and 1560 (35.2 %) to BMS. No significant differences in baseline characteristics were observed between the two groups. However, a significantly higher percentage of patients in the DES group were on dual antiplatelet therapy during 3-year follow-up, as compared to BMS. At long-term follow-up (1,095 [1,090-1,155] days), no significant difference between PES and BMS was observed in mortality (9.2 vs 11.9 %, respectively, HR [95 % CI] = 0.84 [0.67, 1.06], p = 0.15, pheterogeneity = 0.59), reinfarction (8.8 vs 7 %, respectively; HR [95 % CI] = 1.10 [0.84, 1.44], p = 0.51, pheterogeneity = 0.32), stent thrombosis (6.7 vs 4.0 % respectively, HR [95 % CI] = 1.13 [0.82, 1.55], p = 0.45, pheterogeneity = 0.99) and TVR (11.9 vs 20.0 %; HR [95 % CI] = 0.64 [0.54, 0.77], p < 0.0001, pheterogeneity = 0.25). Landmark analysis showed that PES was associated with a significantly higher rate of very late reinfarction (>1 year) (5.6 vs 3.9 %, HR [95 % CI] = 1.61 [1.05-2.47], p = 0.03, pheterogeneity = 0.51], very late ST (2.9 vs 1.1 %, HR [95 % CI] = 1.88 [1.00-3.54], p = 0.05, pheterogeneity = 0.94]. The present pooled patient-level meta-analysis demonstrates that among STEMI patients undergoing primary PCI, PES compared to BMS is associated with a significant reduction in TVR at long-term follow-up. Although there were no differences in cumulative mortality, reinfarction or stent thrombosis, the incidence of very late reinfarction and stent thrombosis was increased with PES.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11239-014-1091-4DOI Listing
January 2015