Impact of Patient and Target-Vessel Characteristics on Arterial and Venous Bypass Graft Patency: Insight From a Randomized Trial

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The purpose of this investigation was to determine optimal patient and target-vessel characteristics to maximize arterial and venous graft patency on the basis of data from a large clinical trial.

Methods and Results—

Angiographic data on 440 radial artery grafts and 440 saphenous vein grafts were analyzed with methodology to account for within-patient clustering. Multivariable models that incorporated patient demographic, operative, anatomic, and postdischarge medical management were constructed to determine predictors of graft occlusion. Radial artery use was strongly protective against graft occlusion at 1 year after adjustment for all covariates, with a larger protective effect seen in women (P=0.05 for a subgroup-by-treatment interaction). Among all grafts, diabetes and small target-vessel diameter were associated with an increased risk of graft occlusion, and grafting to a target vessel with more severe proximal stenosis was associated with a decreased risk of graft occlusion. With regard to gender, radial artery graft occlusion at 1 year occurred in similar proportions of men (8.6%) and women (5.3%, P=0.6), whereas, for saphenous vein grafts the comparable occlusion rates were 12.0% and 23.3% respectively (P=0.02). A history of peripheral vascular disease was associated with an elevated risk of radial artery occlusion but was not associated with early vein graft occlusion (P=0.02 for a subgroup-by-treatment interaction).


Patients benefit from radial artery–coronary artery bypass conduits as opposed to saphenous vein conduits, and this effect is especially strong in women. Small target-vessel size adversely affected graft patency, and grafting to a target vessel with more severe proximal stenosis improved graft patency.

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