To compare the main outcomes of radial versus femoral access at long-term follow-up.
Little is known about the long-term major cardiovascular events and bleeding complications of patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with radial vs femoral approach.
A total of 1107 patients from the CENTURY II trial were included. To minimize baseline differences between radial and femoral groups, we applied propensity-score matching for this comparison.
In this multicenter study, the radial approach was used in 73.4% of patients. After propensity-score matching, baseline and procedural characteristics were comparable between both groups. Procedural success was high and similar in radial and femoral approaches (98.2% vs 97.5%; P=.47) while radial access was associated with a shorter hospital stay (1.69 ± 1.92 days vs 2.08 ± 1.98 days; P<.01). The short-term bleeding and vascular complication rates were significantly lower in the radial group (1.7% vs 6.2% [P<.001 in-hospital] and 2.7% vs 9.6% [P<.001 at 1-month follow-up]). At 3-year follow-up, radial access was associated with lower rates of all-cause mortality (3.9 vs 6.9%; P=.04) and cardiovascular death (2.1 vs 4.9%; P=.02). The composite of all-cause mortality, myocardial infarction, and revascularization showed no differences between groups (18.2 vs 21.1%; P=.29).
Compared to the femoral approach, the radial approach is associated with significantly lower long-term all-cause mortality rate as well as lower in-hospital and short-term bleeding rates. These results suggest additional long-term benefits of radial access for PCI, but should be interpreted within the context of the current study and further verified in future studies.