We sought to evaluate the impact of crossing strategy on the incidence of periprocedural myocardial infarction (PMI) during chronic total occlusion (CTO) percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). Background: The optimal technique for crossing coronary CTOs remains controversial. Methods: We retrospectively examined the incidence of PMI among 184 consecutive patients who underwent CTO PCI at our institution between 2012 and 2015. Creatine kinase-myocardial band fraction (CK-MB) and troponin were measured before and after PCI in all patients. PMI was defined as CK-MB increase ≥3× upper limit of normal (ULN). Results: Mean age was 65 ± 8 years, 98% of patients were men, 57% had diabetes mellitus, 36% were current smokers, 38% had prior heart failure, 31% had prior coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG), and 55% had prior PCI. The retrograde approach was used in 38% of cases. As compared with antegrade wire escalation and antegrade dissection/re-entry, use of the retrograde approach was associated with higher J-CTO (Multicenter CTO Registry of Japan) scores (P < 0.0001), higher frequency of moderate or severe calcification (P = 0.0061), longer CTO length (P < 0.0001), more frequent proximal cap ambiguity (P < 0.0001), and lower technical (P = 0.0007) and procedural (P = 0.0014) success. The frequency of PMI for the antegrade-only and retrograde cases was 10% and 33%, respectively (P = 0.0001). On multivariate analysis, use of the retrograde approach and moderate/severe calcification were independently associated with higher incidence of PMI. Conclusions: As compared with antegrade-only crossing techniques, the retrograde approach is used in patients with more complex anatomy but may carry higher risk for PMI.