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Do statins reduce atrial fibrillation after Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting?


Atrial Fibrillation (AF) is a common postoperative complication after coronary artery bypass grafting. There is contradictory evidence as to whether pre-operative statin use lowers the incidence of postoperative AF. This study aimed to assess whether pre operative statin therapy prevents the post-operative AF.



In this retrospective cohort study we used a propensity score–matching analysis to evaluate the effect of preoperative treatment with statins on postoperative atrial fibrillation. There were 427 matched pairs of patients. Primary outcome was the incidence of postoperative AF. Secondary outcomes were 30 day mortality, stroke, myocardial infarction and length of hospital stay.





The incidence of postoperative AF was not different in the statin users compared with the nonusers (123, 28.1%, versus 127, 29.7%, respectively; p = 0.764). The 30 day mortality (6, 1.4%, versus 8, 1.9%; p = 0.590), stroke (10, 2.3%, versus 8, 1.9%; p = 0.634), Myocardial Infarction (2, 0.5%, versus 0, 0.0%; p = 0.499) and length of hospital stay in days (11.8 ± 9.0, versus 11.9 ± 9.3; p = 0.544) did not differ significantly between the two groups.





In a propensity-matched cohort of patients undergoing coronary bypass surgery, we could not demonstrate that preoperative statins were protective for the development of postoperative atrial fibrillation.

Credits: Anil Paturi, MD; Aman Shukla, MD; George Ebra, Ed.D; Viet Nguyen, DO; Steven Borzak, MD

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