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Original Investigation
Less Is More
May 2016

Characteristics of Patients Undergoing Cardiac Catheterization Before Noncardiac SurgeryA Report From the National Cardiovascular Data Registry CathPCI Registry

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, New York
  • 2Greenberg Division of Cardiology, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, New York
  • 3Duke Clinical Research Institute, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina
  • 4Cardiac Research Centre, St George's Hospital, London, United Kingdom
  • 5Center for Heart and Vascular Health, Christiana Care Health System, Newark, Delaware
  • 6William Beaumont Health System, Royal Oak, Michigan
JAMA Intern Med. 2016;176(5):611-618. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2016.0259

Importance  Many patients undergo cardiac catheterization and/or percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) before noncardiac surgery even though these procedures are not routinely indicated. Data on this cohort of patients are limited.

Objective  To describe the characteristics, angiographic findings, and treatment patterns of clinically stable patients undergoing cardiac catheterization and/or PCI before noncardiac surgery in a large national registry.

Design, Setting, and Participants  This study is a retrospective, descriptive analysis of National Cardiac Data Registry CathPCI Registry diagnostic catheterization and PCI data from July 1, 2009, through December 31, 2014. Data analysis was performed from April 21, 2015, to January 4, 2016. The study included 194 444 patients from 1046 sites who underwent coronary angiography before noncardiac surgery. Patients with acute coronary syndrome, cardiogenic shock, cardiac arrest, or emergency catheterization were excluded.

Main Outcomes and Measures  Demographic characteristics, preprocedure noninvasive testing results, angiographic findings, and treatment recommendations are summarized. Among the 27 838 patients who underwent PCI, procedural details, inpatient outcomes, and discharge medications are reported.

Results  Of the 194 444 included patients, 113 590 (58.4%) were male, the median age was 65 years (interquartile range, 57-73 years), and 162 532 (83.6%) were white. Most were overweight or obese (152 849 [78.6%]), and 78 847 (40.6%) had diabetes mellitus. Most patients were asymptomatic (117 821 [60.6%]), although 112 302 (57.8%) had been taking antianginal medications within 2 weeks of the procedure. Prior noninvasive stress testing was reported in 126 766 (65.2%), and results were positive in 109 458 (86.3%) of those with stress data. Obstructive disease was present in 93 447 (48.1%). After diagnostic angiography, revascularization with PCI or bypass surgery was recommended in 46 380 patients (23.8%) in the overall cohort, 27 191 asymptomatic patients (23.1%), and 45 083 patients with obstructive disease (48.3%). In the 27 191 patients undergoing PCI, 367 treated lesions (1.3%) were in the left main artery and 3831 (13.8%) in the proximal left anterior descending artery. A total of 11 366 patients (40.8%) received drug-eluting stents. Complications occurred in a few patients, with a catheterization-related mortality rate of 0.05%.

Conclusions and Relevance  In the largest contemporary US cohort reported to date, most patients undergoing diagnostic catheterization before noncardiac surgery are asymptomatic. The discovery of obstructive coronary artery disease is common, and although randomized clinical trials have found no benefit in outcomes, revascularization is recommended in nearly half of these patients. The overall findings highlight management patterns in this population and the need for greater evidence-based guidelines and practices.