One of the most hotly debated and polarizing issues in cardiac surgery has been whether coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) without the use of cardiopulmonary bypass or cardioplegia (off-pump CABG, or OPCAB) is superior to that performed with the heart-lung machine and the heart's being chemically arrested (standard CABG). Various clinical trials are reviewed comparing the 2 surgical strategies, including several large retrospective analyses, meta-analyses, and the randomized trials that address different aspects of standard CABG and OPCAB. Although definitive conclusions about the relative merits of standard CABG and OPCAB are difficult to reach from these varied randomized and nonrandomized studies, several generalizations may be possible. Patients may achieve an excellent outcome with either type of procedure, and individuals' outcomes likely depend more on factors other than whether they underwent standard CABG or OPCAB. Nevertheless, there appear to be trends in most studies. These trends include less blood loss and need for transfusion after OPCAB, less myocardial enzyme release after OPCAB up to 24 hours, less early neurocognitive dysfunction after OPCAB, and less renal insufficiency after OPCAB. Fewer grafts tend to be performed with OPCAB than with standard CABG. Length of hospital stay, mortality rate, and long-term neurological function and cardiac outcome appear to be similar in the 2 groups. To definitively answer the remaining questions of whether either strategy is superior and in which patients, a large-scale prospective randomized trial is required.
- AHA Scientific Statements
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)