From October 1994 to November 1995, 150 male eligible patients were randomly assigned to Palmaz-Schatz stent implantation through 6 French catheters using the femoral (puncture) (n = 56), radial (puncture) (n = 56), or brachial (cutdown) (n = 38) approach at 6 participating Belgian centers. Acenocoumarol was given for 1 month after stenting.
End points: Primary-entry site complications (bleeding, haematoma, transfusion, occlusion, surgery) poststent implantation. Secondary-success rate, stent thrombosis, Q or non Q wave MI, repeat PTCA, CABG, CVA, haemorrage, death. There were no statistically significant differences between the three groups for base line and angiographic patient characteristics, procedural characteristics, in hospital outcome, average hospitalisation time after stenting, events during the month after stenting, or local complications at 1 month follow-up. The only statistically significant difference was the arterial time of the procedure: mean +/- SD (minutes) brachial 31.0 +/- 10.02 *P < 0.001, femoral 42.2 +/- 21.8, radial 55.8 +/- 31.3 **P < 0.0001 (*brachial vs. femoral, **brachial vs. radial). There was a clear trend toward more technical difficulties and more problems with the radial approach. In each group: vascular surgery at entry site: 0%, blood transfusion: 0%. In our study, local complications and length of hospital stay were similar with the three possible approaches, and brachial approach was associated with a shorter arterial time.