Document Type


Publication Date

December 2007


This paper has been peer reviewed. It is the authors’ final version prior to publication in American Heart Journal 154(6):1031-1028, December 2007. The published version is available at, copyright by Mosby, Inc.


BACKGROUND: Perioperative myocardial injury (PMI) remains a major cause of perioperative morbidity and mortality but clinical strategies to prevent PMI are still uncertain.

METHODS AND RESULTS: We comprehensively searched PubMed for major research articles concerning clinical strategies to prevent PMI. The key findings are as follows: (1) the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association guideline update for perioperative cardiovascular evaluation for noncardiac surgery is very useful to stratify cardiac risk preoperatively; (2) cardiac troponin has emerged as a biomarker to diagnose postoperative PMI and to predict clinical outcomes; (3) coronary revascularization before noncardiac surgery probably would provide cardiac protection in select patients, especially in patients with high-risk coronary artery disease; (4) elective noncardiac surgery should be postponed in patients who received coronary stenting recently because of high incidence of serious cardiac complications (minimum 6-8 weeks for bare metal stents and 6-12 months for drug-eluting stents); and (5) beta-blockers and statins are very promising drugs and probably would prevent PMI in a select patient population, especially in patients with intermediate risk and stable coronary artery disease.

CONCLUSIONS: Further studies, especially randomized clinical trials and mechanistic investigation are needed to find the best and effective clinical strategies to prevent/reduce PMI.

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