Background: Few studies have evaluated long-term vascular function after radial access catheterization. Furthermore, the impact of repeated catheterization remains unknown. We investigated flow-mediated dilatation (FMD) of the brachial artery after transradial catheterization.
Methods: We prospectively enrolled 50 patients with suspected coronary artery disease referred for diagnostic coronary angiography. No ad-hoc percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI) had been performed at the time of the index procedure. In 30 patients (63.8%), PCI and/or repeated follow-up diagnostic catheterization were subsequently performed via the radial artery used at the index catheterization. FMD was successfully measured before catheterization, at 24 h after catheterization, and after long-term follow-up (mean, 32 months; range, 24-43) in 47 patients. FMD at follow-up was compared between patients receiving only one procedure and those receiving multiple procedures via the same arteries.
Results: FMD was significantly decreased after catheterization and recovered well in long-term follow-up (3.7 ± 1.6%, 3.0 ± 1.7%, and 3.9 ± 1.6%). There was no significant difference in follow-up FMD between the patients undergoing single catheterization and those with multiple procedures (3.4 ± 1.3 vs. 4.3 ± 1.7, p = 0.06). When the patients were divided into two groups according to the median follow-up FMD value, no significant predictive factor was identified for worse FMD.
Conclusions: After transradial catheterization, FMD of the brachial artery temporarily decreased but recovered in long-term follow-up. Recovery of FMD was not jeopardized by repeated catheterization, which suggests the potential of the brachial artery to recover endothelial function after repeated transradial procedures.
Keywords: Endothelial dysfunction; Flow mediated dilatation.