Author + information
- Received January 24, 1994
- Revision received June 27, 1994
- Accepted July 27, 1994
- Published online January 1, 1995.
- Lisa A Mendes, MD∗,
- Gilbert P Connelly, MD, FACC,
- Patrice A McKenney, MD, FACC,
- Philip J Podrid, MD, FACC,
- L.Adrienne Cupples, PhD,
- Richard J Shemin, MD, FACC,
- Thomas J Ryan, MD, FACC and
- Ravin Davidoff, MBBCh, FACC
- ↵∗Address for correspondence: Dr. Lisa A. Mendes, Section of Cardiology, University Hospital, 88 East Newton Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02118.
Objectives. This study attempted to determine the importance of severe proximal right coronary artery disease as a predictor of atrial fibrillation in patients after coronary artery bypass surgery.
Background. Studies in patients undergoing noncardiac surgery have suggested that ischemia in the right coronary artery distribution is associated with a high incidence of atrial fibrillation. However, the importance of right coronary artery disease as a predictor of atrial fibrillation after bypass surgery is unknown.
Methods. The occurrence of sustained postoperative atrial fibrillation was studied prospectively in 168 consecutive patients undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting. Patients were followed up postoperatively until discharge. Severe right coronary artery stenosis was defined as ≥70% lumen narrowing.
Results. Of 104 patients with proximal or mid right coronary artery stenosis, 45 (43%) had atrial fibrillation postoperatively compared with 12 (19%) of the 64 patients without significant right coronary disease (p = 0.001). Univariate predictors of atrial fibrillation included right coronary artery stenosis (p = 0.001), advancing age (p = 0.0001) and lack of beta-adrenergic blocking agent therapy after bypass surgery (p = 0.0004). Multivariate adjusted risk of developing atrial fibrillation after bypass surgery increased with the presence of severe right coronary artery disease (odds ratio 3.69, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.61 to 8.48), advancing age (odds ratio 2.24/10 years, CI 1.48 to 3.41) and male gender (odds ratio 2.36, CI 1.01 to 5.49). The use of beta-blockers postoperatively was associated with a protective effect (odds ratio 0.4, CI 0.17 to 0.80).
Conclusions. The presence of severe right coronary artery stenosis is an independent and powerful predictor of atrial fibrillation after coronary artery bypass surgery. In association with age, gender and postoperative beta-blocker therapy, these variables can be used to identify patients at increased risk for developing this arrhythmia.
- Received January 24, 1994.
- Revision received June 27, 1994.
- Accepted July 27, 1994.