Author(s): Stephan Achenbach, Dieter Ropers, Lisa Kallert, Nesrin Turan, Robert Krhner, Tobias Wolf, Christoph Garlichs, Frank Flachskampf, Werner G Daniel, Josef Ludwig
Aims: The transradial (TR) approach has potentially lower complication rates than transfemoral (TF) approach coronary angiography. However, it may be technically more challenging, especially in elderly patients with alterations in vascular anatomy. We thus determined success rates, procedural data, and complication rates of TR angiography in comparison to the TF approach in elderly patients in a randomized, prospective trial. Methods and results: Four hundred consecutive patients ≥75 years with known or suspected coronary artery disease were included in the study. After exclusion of 93 patients with contraindications to the radial approach, 152 patients were randomized to the TR and 155 to TF coronary angiography and intervention. In 13 patients randomized to TR, cross-over to TF was necessary (9%). Total examination time was significantly longer for the TR approach (18.1 vs. 15.0 min, P = 0.009), but no difference was found for fluoroscopy time, number of catheters used, or amount of contrast agent. The rate of major complications (bleeding requiring surgery or transfusion, stroke) was 0% for TR and 3.2% for TF approach (P < 0.001). Minor complications occurred in 1.3% versus 5.8% of patients (P < 0.001). Conclusion: In elderly patients, TR coronary angiography and intervention has a high technical success rate and lower complication rates than the TF approach.