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Clinical research

Long-term follow-up (four years) of unprotected left main coronary artery disease treated with paclitaxel-eluting stents (from the TRUE Registry)

Aims: Limited data are available on the long-term outcome following PCI with paclitaxel-eluting stent (PES) implantation in patients with unprotected left main coronary artery (LMCA). The objective of this study was to evaluate “real world” long-term outcome following paclitaxel-eluting stent (PES) implantation for unprotected LMCA disease in patients enrolled in the TRUE registry.

Methods and results: From March 2003 to October 2004, 93 consecutive patients (81.7% male) underwent PCI for unprotected LMCA disease. Surveillance angiography was performed at 6.8±3.3 months follow-up. The target lesion involved the distal LMCA in 68 (73.1%) patients. Double stenting techniques were performed in 46 (67.6%) distal LMCA, of these 50% were stented using the Crush technique. Clinical follow-up was complete in all patients with 85.8% angiographic follow-up rate. In-segment restenosis occurred in 16 (20.3%) patients and was focal in 72.4% of cases and significantly higher in patients with distal LMCA (36.8% vs. 13.6%, p<0.04). At a median follow-up of 1,450 days (IQR 1281-1595), the overall incidence of MACE was 35.5% and the TLR rate was 25.8% and significantly higher in patients with bifurcation stenting (32.3% vs. 8%, p<0.02). The estimated cardiac survival rate at one and four years was 96.7% and 93.3%, respectively. Total mortality rate was 14.1% and cardiac was 6.5%. There was one (1.1%) definite stent thrombosis (ST) and one (1.1%) probable ST.

Conclusions: Treatment of unprotected LMCA disease with PES, after four years follow-up, appears to be safe and effective with a low rate of cardiac mortality and overall risk of ST. The need for target lesion revascularisation in 25.8% of patients highlights the need for more effective PCI especially in patients with distal LMCA disease.

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