Objectives: To evaluate the long-term outcome of patients randomized to coronary bypass surgery or coronary angioplasty.
Background: The Emory Angioplasty versus Surgery Trial (EAST) is a single center randomized comparison of a strategy of initial coronary angioplasty (n = 198) or coronary bypass surgery (n = 194) for patients with multivessel coronary artery disease. The primary end point (death, myocardial infarction or a large ischemic defect at 3 years) was not different, and repeat revascularization was significantly greater in the angioplasty group. Subsequently, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute supported a five-year extension of the trial.
Methods: After the three year anniversary visit, annual questionnaires, telephone contact and examination of medical records were accomplished until death or the eight year anniversary in 100% of the patients surviving at 3 years.
Results: Survival at 8 years is 79.3% in the angioplasty group and 82.7% in the surgical group (p = 0.40). Patients with proximal left anterior descending stenosis and those with diabetes tended to have better late survival with surgical intervention although not reaching statistical significance. After the first 3 years, repeat interventions remained relatively equal for both treatment groups.
Conclusions: Long-term survival is not significantly different between angioplasty and surgery, and late (three to eight year) revascularization procedures were infrequent. Patients without treated diabetes had similar survival in both groups.