OBJECTIVE: The effects of intravascular ultrasound (IVUS)-guided drug-eluting stent (DES) implantation in patients with complex coronary artery lesions remains to be controversial. This study sought to evaluate the outcomes of IVUS guidance in these patients.
METHODS: The EMBASE, Medline, and other internet sources were searched for relevant articles. The primary endpoint was major adverse cardiac events (MACE), including all-cause mortality, myocardial infarction (MI), and target-vessel revascularization (TVR). The incidence of definite/probable stent thrombosis (ST) was analyzed as the safety endpoint.
RESULTS: Fifteen clinical trials involving 8.084 patients were analyzed. MACE risk was significantly decreased following IVUS-guided DES implantation compared with coronary angiography (CAG) guidance (odds ratio [OR] 0.63, 95% confidence intervals [CI]: 0.53–0.73, p<0.001), which might mainly result from the lower all-cause mortality risk (OR 0.52, 95% CI: 0.40–0.67, p<0.001), MI (OR 0.70, 95% CI: 0.56–0.86, p=0.001), and TVR (OR 0.53, 95% CI: 0.40–0.70, p<0.001). The subgroup analyses indicated better outcomes of IVUS guidance in DES implantation for these patients with left main disease or bifurcation lesions.
CONCLUSIONS: IVUS guidance in DES implantation is associated with a significant reduction in MACE risk in patients with complex lesions, particularly those with left main disease or bifurcation lesions. More large and powerful randomized trials are still warranted to guide stenting decision making.