The Appropriateness of Use of Percutaneous Transluminal Coronary Angioplasty in New York State

Published In: JAMA, The Journal of the American Medical Association, v. 269, no. 6, Feb. 10, 1993, p. 761-765

Posted on on January 01, 1993

by Lee H. Hilborne, Lucian L. Leape, Steven J. Bernstein, Rolla Edward Park, Mary Fiske, Caren Kamberg, Carol P. Roth, Robert H. Brook

Read More

Access further information on this document at American Medical Association

This article was published outside of RAND. The full text of the article can be found at the link above.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the appropriateness of use of percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) in New York State. DESIGN: Retrospective randomized medical record. SETTING: Fifteen randomly selected hospitals in New York State that provide PTCA. Patients: Random sample of 1306 patients undergoing PTCA in New York State in 1990. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Percentage of patients who underwent PTCA for indications rated appropriate, uncertain, and inappropriate. RESULTS: The majority of patients received PTCA for chronic stable angina, unstable angina, and in the post-myocardial infarction period (up to 3 weeks). Fifty-eight percent of PTCAs were rated appropriate; 38%, uncertain; and 4%, inappropriate. The inappropriate rate varied by hospital from 1% to 9% (P = .12); the uncertain rate, from 26% to 50% (P = .02); and the combined inappropriate and uncertain rate, from 29% to 57% (P < .001). There was no difference in appropriateness when the institutions were grouped by volume (fewer than 300 procedures annually or at least 300 procedures annually), location (upstate vs downstate), or by teaching status. CONCLUSIONS: Few PTCAs were performed for inappropriate indications in New York State. However, the large number of procedures performed for indications that were rated uncertain as to their net benefit requires further study and justification at both clinical and policy levels.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.