Management of stable coronary artery disease.
Lancet. 2010 Feb 27;375(9716):763-772
Authors: Pfisterer ME, Zellweger MJ, Gersh BJ
Results of two randomised controlled trials for the management of mild-to-moderate chronic stable coronary artery disease (Clinical Outcomes Utilizing Revascularization and Aggressive drug Evaluation [COURAGE] and Bypass Angioplasty Revascularization Investigation type-2 Diabetes [BARI-2D]) have stimulated a vigorous debate about whether an initial strategy of revascularisation or a conservative approach with drugs is most effective. The conclusions of these two trials were clear: for some patients randomly assigned after angiography to revascularisation or pharmacological therapy, rates of death and myocardial infarction did not differ between the two strategies. What remains unresolved is how to generalise these data to patients without angiography, the role of stress testing, and the preferred approach to patients with relevant ischaemia on stress testing. This Review draws attention to the controversial issues in both management approaches, analyses the strengths and limitations of recent trials, and proposes a treatment algorithm that is applicable to daily clinical practice. Findings suggest that the severity of anginal symptoms and the extent of ischaemia in stress testing could help to identify patients who are at increased risk and who might benefit from an early invasive strategy. On the basis of the data and considerations presented, a strategy of initial optimum pharmacological therapy or direct invasive management can be tailored to an individual's circumstances and preferences.
PMID: 20189028 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]