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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 10

of 'Coronary angiography and revascularization for unstable angina or non-ST elevation acute myocardial infarction'

5-year outcome of an interventional strategy in non-ST-elevation acute coronary syndrome: the British Heart Foundation RITA 3 randomised trial.
Fox KA, Poole-Wilson P, Clayton TC, Henderson RA, Shaw TR, Wheatley DJ, Knight R, Pocock SJ
Lancet. 2005;366(9489):914.
BACKGROUND: The long-term outcome of an interventional strategy in patients with non-ST-elevation acute coronary syndrome is unknown. We tested whether an interventional strategy (routine angiography followed by revascularisation) was better than a conservative strategy (ischaemia-driven or symptom-driven angiography) over 5 years' follow-up.
METHODS: In a multicentre randomised trial, 1810 patients (from 45 hospitals in England and Scotland, UK) with non-ST-elevation acute coronary syndrome were randomly assigned to receive an early intervention (n=895) or a conservative strategy (n=915) within 48 h of the index episode of cardiac pain. In each group, the aim was to provide the best medical treatment, and also to undertake coronary arteriography within 72 h in the interventional strategy with subsequent management guided by the angiographic findings. Analysis was by intention to treat and the primary outcome (composite of death or non-fatal myocardial infarction) had masked independent adjudication. RITA 3 has been assigned the International Standard Randomised Control Trial Number ISRCTN07752711.
FINDINGS: At 1-year follow-up, rates of death or non-fatal myocardial infarction were similar. However, at a median of 5 years' follow-up (IQR 4.6-5.0), 142 (16.6%) patients with intervention treatment and 178 (20.0%) with conservative treatment died or had non-fatal myocardial infarction (odds ratio 0.78, 95% CI 0.61-0.99, p=0.044), with a similar benefit for cardiovascular death or myocardial infarction (0.74, 0.56-0.97, p=0.030). 234 (102 [12%]intervention, 132 [15%]conservative) patients died during follow-up (0.76, 0.58-1.00, p=0.054). The benefits of an intervention strategy were mainly seen in patients at high risk of death or myocardial infarction (p=0.004), and for the highest risk group, the odds ratio of death or non-fatal myocardial infarction was 0.44 (0.25-0.76).
INTERPRETATION: In patients with non-ST-elevation acute coronary syndrome, a routine invasive strategy leads to long-term reduction in risk of death or non-fatal myocardial infarction, and this benefit is mainly in high-risk patients. The findings provide support for national and international guidelines in the need for more robust risk stratification in acute coronary syndrome.
Centre for Cardiovascular Science, Department of Medical and Radiological Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh EH16 4SB, UK. k.a.a.fox@ed.ac.uk