Objectives: To explore the relation between older age and clinical presentation, procedural success, and in-hospital outcomes among a large unselected population undergoing percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA).
Background: Although more elderly patients are receiving PTCA, studies of post-PTCA outcomes among the elderly have been limited by small numbers and exclusive selection criteria.
Methods: Data were collected as a part of a prospective registry of all percutaneous coronary interventions performed in Maine, New Hampshire, and from 1 institution in Massachusetts between October 1989 and December 1993. Comparisons across 4 age groups, (<60, 60 to 69, 70 to 79, and 80 years and above) were performed using chi-square tests, the Mantel-Haenzsel test for trend, and logistic regression.
Results: Twelve thousand one hundred seventy-two hospitalizations for PTCA were performed with 507 of them (4%) in persons at least 80 years old. Octogenarians were more likely to be women, have multivessel disease, high-grade stenoses, and complex lesions but were less likely to have hypercholesterolemia, a history of smoking, or have undergone a previous PTCA. In the elderly, PTCAs were more often performed urgently and for unstable syndromes compared with younger age groups. Advancing age is strongly associated with in-hospital death, and among the oldest old with an increased risk of postprocedural myocardial infarction. Despite differing presentation and procedural priority, angiographic success and subsequent bypass surgery did not vary by age.
Conclusions: With the increasing age of the population at large as well as that segment at risk for cardiac revascularization, information about age-associated risks of the procedure, especially the substantially higher risk of death in octogenarians, will be critical for both physicians and patients considering PTCA.