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Article
June 1991

Invasive Treatment for Coronary Artery Disease in the Elderly

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Medicine, John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, and McGill University School of Medicine, and McGill Center on Aging, Montreal, Quebec.

Arch Intern Med. 1991;151(6):1085-1088. doi:10.1001/archinte.1991.00400060033006
Abstract

The widespread availability of coronary artery bypass grafting and percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty presents important treatment options for the older patient. The findings from a number of surgical series of coronary artery bypass grafting and percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty are summarized. Certain trends are evident. Perioperative mortality, cardiovascular morbidity, and other complications, while declining, remain somewhat higher in elderly patients. However, the impact of age alone is slight. In both coronary artery bypass grafting and percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty, complications are more closely correlated with the presence of serious concomitant disease. Long-term survival and pain relief after coronary artery bypass grafting are excellent in older patients, and percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty may be the treatment of choice in some elderly patients with coronary artery disease. As in younger patients, prolongation of survival should not be the exclusive goal. Rather, a focus on quality of life and freedom from dependency should be seriously considered.

(Arch Intern Med. 1991;151:1085-1088)

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