Background. Coronary artery disease represents a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with connective tissue disease. Few reports exist on the results of surgical management of coronary artery disease in these patients. Methods. The medical records of patients with connective tissue diseases who underwent coronary artery bypass grafting at our institution between 1995 and 2002 were reviewed for demographic data, perioperative variables, and postoperative complications. The results were compared with data from The Society of Thoracic Surgeons database. Results. Forty-four patients were identified from a total of 5,496 cases during the study period (0.8%). There were 35 patients with rheumatoid arthritis, 8 with systemic lupus erythematosus, and 1 with scleroderma. Patients with connective tissue diseases were more likely to be women and use immunomodulating agents. They also had a higher incidence of Canadian Cardiovascular Society class IV angina, need for inotropic agents, need for intraaortic balloon pulsation, use of blood transfusions, and leg wound infections. The use of steroids or other immunomodulating agents was associated with increased postoperative complications. Mean follow-up was 35 months. The overall survival and freedom from reintervention at 3 years were 89% and 75%, respectively. Conclusions. Coronary artery bypass grafting is a safe treatment modality in patients with connective tissue diseases, with acceptable early results. Wound complications may be a problem in this patient population. Midterm results are less favorable, and reinterventions are frequently required.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine