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What do we know about perioperative ischaemic cardiac events in patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery?

Harry C Lowe and Saul B Freedman
Med J Aust 2006; 184 (8): 376-377.
Published online: 17 April 2006

A recent review shows how much more we need to find out about this important problem

Perioperative ischaemic cardiac events include myocardial infarction, cardiac arrest and cardiac death, and are estimated to occur in 2%–5% of patients over 40 years of age.1 Mortality rates associated with perioperative myocardial infarction and cardiac arrest may be as high as 25% and 65%, respectively.2,3 In the Australian context, precise data on the numbers of patients at risk are not available, but with more than 440 000 general anaesthetics performed annually, this is likely to be an issue facing many physicians. A recent narrative review of the problem is therefore of timely importance.1,4

  • Harry C Lowe1,2
  • Saul B Freedman1,2

  • 1 Department of Cardiology, Concord Repatriation General Hospital, Sydney, NSW.
  • 2 Anzac Research Institute, Faculty of Medicine, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW.


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