Objectives. We sought to determine whether there is a gender bias in the selection of patients for coronary revascularization once the severity of the underlying coronary artery disease has been established with angiography. Background. It has been suggested that women with coronary artery disease are less likely to be referred for coronary angiography and coronary artery bypass surgery than men. Whether such a referral bias for revascularization procedures, including coronary angioplasty, is present once angiography has been performed is not clear. Methods. We retrospectively analyzed 22,795 patients with suspected coronary artery disease who underwent coronary angiography between 1981 and 1991 and compared the numbers of women and men who underwent either coronary artery bypass surgery or coronary angioplasty within 30 days of coronary angiography. Results. Angiography revealed significant (one-vessel or more) disease in 15,455 patients (52% of women, 76% of men). Despite worse symptoms, women had less extensive coronary disease than men as judged by the number of vessels diseased. Women were also more likely to have other co-morbid diseases. An equal proportion of women (54%) and men underwent revascularization procedures. After adjustment for baseline differences and age, differences in the two individual revascularization strategies were very small: More women tended to have coronary angioplasty ([absolute difference ± 1 SD] + 3.3 ± 0.7%, p < 0.0001), but fewer had coronary artery bypass surgery than men (-2.5 ± 0.8%, p = 0.003). When the two revascularization strategies were considered together, there was no significant gender difference in overall adjusted use of revascularization (+0.8 ± 0.9%, p = 0.41). Conclusions. Once diagnostic coronary angiography had been performed, no major differences in the overall utilization of revascularization procedures were noted for women compared with men.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine