Public Release: 

The risk of waiting for coronary artery bypass surgery

Canadian Medical Association Journal

The relative urgency of coronary artery bypass grafting is still under debate, and in this issue of CMAJ, Légaré and colleagues evaluated safety among patients with stenosis of the left main coronary artery.

The authors assigned 561 such patients to 1 of 4 waiting queue: emergent (no waiting), in-hospital urgent and out-of-hospital semi-urgent A and semi-urgent B (the longest wait). The authors found that pre- and postoperative mortality and morbidity were not significantly associated with the waiting period but point out that the "acceptable" rate of adverse events for a managed waiting strategy is still undetermined.

In a related commentary, Rexius asks whether patients do in fact have an increased risk of death on the waiting list and encourages short waiting times to reduce possible risk.

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p. 371 Assessing the risk of waiting for waiting for coronary artery bypass graft surgery among patients with stenosis of the left main coronary artery
Jean-François Légaré et al
http://www.cmaj.ca/misc/press/pg371.pdf

p. 381 Should patients with stenosis of the left main coronary artery waiting bypass grafting be given priority?
Helena Rexius
http://www.cmaj.ca/misc/press/pg381.pdf

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