Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

BACKGROUND: The EXCEL trial compared outcomes in patients with unprotected left main coronary artery disease (LMCAD) treated with coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) or percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) using everolimus-eluting stents. While rates of death, stroke, and myocardial infarction were similar at 36 months, event timing and repeat revascularization rates differed by treatment group. OBJECTIVES: To understand the effects of revascularization strategy from the patient's perspective, we performed a prospective quality of life (QoL) sub-study alongside the EXCEL trial. METHODS: Between September 2010 and March 2014, 1905 patients with LMCAD were randomized to undergo CABG or PCI, of whom 1788 participated in the QoL sub-study. QoL was assessed at baseline and 1, 12, and 36 months using the Seattle Angina Questionnaire, the SF-12, the Rose Dyspnea Scale, the Patient Health Questionnaire-8, and the EQ-5D. Differences between PCI and CABG were assessed using longitudinal random-effect growth curve models. RESULTS: Over 36 months, both PCI and CABG were associated with significant improvements in QoL compared with baseline. At 1 month, PCI was associated with better QoL than CABG. By 12 months though, these differences were largely attenuated, and by 36 months, there were no significant QoL differences between PCI and CABG. CONCLUSIONS: Among selected patients with LMCAD, both PCI and CABG result in similar QoL improvement through 36 months, although a greater early benefit is seen with PCI. Taken together with the 3-year clinical results of EXCEL, these findings suggest that PCI and CABG provide similar intermediate-term outcomes for patients with LMCAD.

Original publication




Journal article


J Am Coll Cardiol

Publication Date



Bypass Surgery, Left Main Coronary Artery Disease, Percutaneous Coronary Intervention, Quality of Life