Background: The relative mortality of coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery in women is not certain. The purpose of this study was to examine the results of primary, isolated CABG in a series of Taiwanese female patients. Methods: Medical records of 2055 patients (188 women and 1867 men), who underwent primary, isolated CABG at Taipei Veterans General Hospital from January 1, 1991 to December 31, 1999, were reviewed. The mortality rate, associated with clinical and operative variables, was compared between female and male patients. Results: The female patients had more diabetes (51.6% vs. 29.9%, P < 0.01), more hypertension (77.1% vs. 65.0%, P < 0.01), and more hypercholesterolemia (39.4% vs. 29.6%, P < 0.01), as compared with men. Fewer women consumed cigarette smoking (17.0% vs. 52.1%, P < 0.001). Fewer internal mammary artery grafts were used in women (43.1% vs. 57.3%, P < 0.001). Nine female (4.8%) and 93 male patients (5.0%) died. There was no significant difference in hospital mortality between women and men. Other variables, including age, angina class, NYHA class, incidence of peripheral arterial occlusive disease, stenosis of left main coronary artery, number of stenotic coronary arteries, incidence of emergent operations, anastomosis number, aortic cross-clamping time, cardiopulmonary bypass time, and left ventricular ejection fraction, were not significantly different between female and male patients. Conclusions: Although the female patients were more frequently diabetic, hypertensive, and hypercholesterolemic, the hospital mortality of CABG in women was not significantly different from that in men. This result supports an aggressive surgical treatment for women with coronary artery disease.
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