The new European Society of Cardiology guidelines on myocardial revascularisation: an appraisal
ABSTRACT The latest European Society of Cardiology (ESC) guidelines on myocardial revascularisation are reviewed. The nearly 300 recommendations make it difficult to apply them in their totality. The authors would propose 20-30 recommendations per guideline based on sound clinical evidence. Also, the scope of the current guidelines is very wide as it includes topics already incorporated in other guidelines, such as strategies for pre-intervention diagnosis and imaging as well as on secondary prevention. Some recommendations in the new guidelines are sensible and will not be disputed. In particular, the encouragement of a balanced multidisciplinary decision process (the 'heart team') is welcome. Although coronary revascularisation in unstable high risk patients is well accepted, this is less the case for the low risk patient with chest pain. This issue is controversial and a balanced discussion of the pros and cons of percutaneous coronary intervention is missing. Despite convincing evidence indicating lack of benefit of percutaneous coronary intervention for chronic total occlusion, this procedure is not discouraged. Lastly, most committee members were interventional cardiologists or cardiac surgeons. Guideline committees should be representative of the whole group of professionals as the interpretation of the evidence by specialists may be biased. There may be a role for procedure oriented guidelines but, in that case, the items at issue should remain confined to matters directly related to technical aspects of the procedure.
SourceAvailable from: William J Kostuk[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: In patients with stable coronary artery disease, it remains unclear whether an initial management strategy of percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with intensive pharmacologic therapy and lifestyle intervention (optimal medical therapy) is superior to optimal medical therapy alone in reducing the risk of cardiovascular events. We conducted a randomized trial involving 2287 patients who had objective evidence of myocardial ischemia and significant coronary artery disease at 50 U.S. and Canadian centers. Between 1999 and 2004, we assigned 1149 patients to undergo PCI with optimal medical therapy (PCI group) and 1138 to receive optimal medical therapy alone (medical-therapy group). The primary outcome was death from any cause and nonfatal myocardial infarction during a follow-up period of 2.5 to 7.0 years (median, 4.6). There were 211 primary events in the PCI group and 202 events in the medical-therapy group. The 4.6-year cumulative primary-event rates were 19.0% in the PCI group and 18.5% in the medical-therapy group (hazard ratio for the PCI group, 1.05; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.87 to 1.27; P=0.62). There were no significant differences between the PCI group and the medical-therapy group in the composite of death, myocardial infarction, and stroke (20.0% vs. 19.5%; hazard ratio, 1.05; 95% CI, 0.87 to 1.27; P=0.62); hospitalization for acute coronary syndrome (12.4% vs. 11.8%; hazard ratio, 1.07; 95% CI, 0.84 to 1.37; P=0.56); or myocardial infarction (13.2% vs. 12.3%; hazard ratio, 1.13; 95% CI, 0.89 to 1.43; P=0.33). As an initial management strategy in patients with stable coronary artery disease, PCI did not reduce the risk of death, myocardial infarction, or other major cardiovascular events when added to optimal medical therapy. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00007657 [ClinicalTrials.gov].).New England Journal of Medicine 05/2007; 356(15):1503-16. DOI:10.1056/NEJMoa070829 · 54.42 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The COURAGE study has stimulated intensive discussion about the optimal approach to treatment of patients with stable angina. To some, the study implied that PCI has no clinical benefit versus optimal medical therapy but this is open to alternative considered interpretation. To the interventionalist who deploys optimal medical therapy responsibly, the study highlights the importance of the concept of an ischaemia driven approach. The availability of the pressure wire has provided cardiologists with an important additional tool with which to tailor the delivery of revascularisation to not just the ischaemic patient but also to the ischaemic lesion. Such a strategy applied to COURAGE (and perhaps also to SYNTAX) might provide a very different comparative outcome.Heart (British Cardiac Society) 09/2009; 96(2):103-5. DOI:10.1136/hrt.2009.179168 · 6.02 Impact Factor
Article: Meta-analysis in clinical trials.[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: This paper examines eight published reviews each reporting results from several related trials. Each review pools the results from the relevant trials in order to evaluate the efficacy of a certain treatment for a specified medical condition. These reviews lack consistent assessment of homogeneity of treatment effect before pooling. We discuss a random effects approach to combining evidence from a series of experiments comparing two treatments. This approach incorporates the heterogeneity of effects in the analysis of the overall treatment efficacy. The model can be extended to include relevant covariates which would reduce the heterogeneity and allow for more specific therapeutic recommendations. We suggest a simple noniterative procedure for characterizing the distribution of treatment effects in a series of studies.Controlled Clinical Trials 10/1986; 7(3):177-88. DOI:10.1016/0197-2456(86)90046-2