Background: The efficacy and safety of drug-eluting stent (DES) implantation for unprotected left main coronary artery (LMCA) disease remain to be established in different clinical settings.
Methods: Elective DES implantation for unprotected LMCA stenosis was performed in 220 patients at the Fu Wai Hospital, China, from April 2003 to February 2006. Data derived from the latter group were compared with those derived from 224 patients treated with bare-metal stents (BMSs) before March 2003 in a Chinese registry of unprotected LMCA stenting.
Results: Compared with the historical BMS control group, the DES group had more multivessel disease and underwent more bifurcation stenting. The inhospital major adverse cardiac events were significantly higher in the DES than in the BMS recipients (4.1% vs 0.9%, P = .030) because of more complex lesions and procedures in the DES group. During the 15-month mean follow-up period, cumulative cardiac death (0.5% vs 4.9%, P = .004), target-vessel revascularization (5.9% vs 11.6%, P = .034), and major adverse cardiac event (9.5% vs 16.5%, P = .029) rates were significantly lower in the DES than in the BMS group. There was no significant difference in clinical efficacy between sirolimus- and paclitaxel-eluting stents. Angiographic follow-up was performed in 46.4% of DES and 45.7% of BMS recipients, respectively; and the binary restenosis rate was significantly lower in the DES versus the BMS control group (16.7% vs 31.4%, P = .014).
Conclusions: Based on this comparison with a historical control, DES implantation for unprotected LMCA appears safe in selected patients and might be more effective in preventing major adverse cardiac events compared with BMS implantation over a mean follow-up period of 15 months.