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When Heart Disease Is Severe, You’ll Probably Do Better With Bypass

Heart DiseaseIf three of your coronary arteries or your left main coronary artery are diseased, you’re better off with bypass surgery than angioplasty with stenting.

That’s what a 2017 study of participants in the 2013 SYNTAX trial reveals.

SYNTAX documented fewer adverse outcomes among patients with severe disease five years after coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) versus five years after angioplasty with a drug-eluting stent. (The first-generation stent was coated with the drug paclitaxel to prevent scarring.)

The new study shows that long-term quality of life for these patients, who had either three-vessel or left main coronary artery disease, was also better after bypass surgery.

“Both CABG and angioplasty with drug-eluting stents were associated with substantial and sustained quality-of-life benefits over five years of follow-up,” study author Mouin S. Abdallah, MD, points out. “But CABG provided greater relief from angina at five years, primarily among patients with anatomically complex disease.”

The new research shores up support for CABG as the preferred treatment for complex coronary artery disease. Learn more.