Distal Target Vessel Quality and Outcomes of Chronic Total Occlusion Percutaneous Coronary Intervention

JACC Cardiovasc Interv. 2023 Jun 26;16(12):1490-1500. doi: 10.1016/j.jcin.2023.03.007.


Background: Distal vessel quality is a key parameter in the global chronic total occlusion (CTO) crossing algorithm.

Objectives: The study sought to evaluate the association of distal vessel quality with the outcomes of CTO percutaneous coronary intervention.

Methods: We examined the clinical and angiographic characteristics and procedural outcomes of 10,028 CTO percutaneous coronary interventions performed at 39 U.S. and non-U.S. centers between 2012 and 2022. A poor-quality distal vessel was defined as <2 mm diameter or with significant diffuse atherosclerotic disease. In-hospital major adverse cardiac events (MACE) included death, myocardial infarction, urgent repeat target vessel revascularization, tamponade requiring pericardiocentesis or surgery, and stroke.

Results: A total of 33% of all CTO lesions had poor-quality distal vessel. When compared with good-quality distal vessels, CTO lesions with a poor-quality distal vessel had higher J-CTO (Japanese chronic total occlusion) scores (2.7 ± 1.1 vs 2.2 ± 1.3; P < 0.01), lower technical (79.9% vs 86.9%; P < 0.01) and procedural (78.0% vs 86.8%; P < 0.01) success, and higher incidence of MACE (2.5% vs 1.7%; P < 0.01) and perforation (6.4% vs 3.7%; P < 0.01). A poor-quality distal vessel was independently associated with technical failure and MACE. Poor-quality distal vessels were associated with higher use of the retrograde approach (25.2% vs 14.9%; P < 0.01) and higher air kerma radiation dose (2.4 [IQR: 1.3-4.0] Gy vs 2.0 [IQR: 1.1-3.5] Gy; P < 0.01).

Conclusions: A poor-quality distal vessel in CTO lesions is associated with higher lesion complexity, higher need for retrograde crossing, lower technical and procedural success, higher incidence of MACE and coronary perforation, and higher radiation dose.

Keywords: chronic total occlusion; coronary artery disease; distal target vessel; percutaneous coronary intervention.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Humans
  • Myocardial Infarction*
  • Percutaneous Coronary Intervention* / adverse effects
  • Stroke*
  • Treatment Outcome