Objective—To define the incidence, possible causes, operative procedure, and early and medium term results of patients undergoing reoperation for coronary artery disease.
Design—A retrospective analysis of patients undergoing reoperation in one hospital during a 10 year period.
Setting—A regional cardiothoracic centre.
Patients—115 patients had reoperation for recurrent angina, 1–17 years (mean (SD) 7·4 (3·9)) after primary revascularisation.
Main outcome measures—They received 279 grafts (2·4 grafts per patient); 58% of the grafts were anasatomosed to previously grafted vessels. The internal mammary artery was used in 87% of patients who required grafts to the left anterior descending coronary artery.
Results—Reoperation accounted for 8·3% of the total number of patients who underwent coronary bypass grafting. Graft failure alone or in combination with other factors was judged to be the cause of recurrence of symptoms in 87%. 42% of patients had two or more coronary risk factors. The early mortality was 5·2% and the actuarial survival at five and 10 years was 90·4% and 88·4% respectively. 85% of the survivors had initial complete relief of angina and 14% had partial improvement. Freedom from recurrent symptoms at five and 10 years was 66·6% and 34·6% respectively.
Conclusions—Vein graft failure either alone or in combination with progression of native coronary disease is the main cause for symptomatic deterioration after bypass grafting. Reoperation can be performed with slightly increased risk and can give good early and medium term results.