Hochman, J. S., McCabe, C. H., Stone, P. H., Becker, R. C., Cannon, C. P., DeFeo-Fraulini, T., Thompson, B., Steingart, R., Knatterud, G., Braunwald, E. Outcome and profile of women and men presenting with acute coronary syndromes: a report from TIMI IIIB. TIMI Investigators. Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction Journal of the American College of Cardiology. 1997;30(1):141-8.

OBJECTIVES: Women and men enrolled in the Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction (TIMI) IIIB trial of unstable angina and non-Q wave myocardial infarction (MI) were evaluated to determine gender differences in characteristics and outcome.

BACKGROUND: Coronary heart disease is the leading cause of death for women and men. However, the characteristics and outcome of women compared with men with unstable angina and non-Q wave MI have not been extensively studied.

METHODS: The characteristics, outcomes and proportion of 497 women and 976 men with unstable angina and non-Q wave MI at the time of enrollment were compared. When these proportions were noted to be significantly different, we compared them with the 7,731-patient TIMI IIIB Registry, which represents the non-trial, screened population with these syndromes at these centers.

RESULTS: For both coronary syndromes, women were older, were less frequently white, had a higher incidence of diabetes and hypertension and were receiving more cardiac medications. The 42-day rate of death and MI in TIMI IIIB was similar for women and men (7.4% vs. 7.5%). Coronary angiography revealed less severe coronary artery disease for women than for men, with absence of critical obstructions in 25% versus 16% and mean ejection fractions 62 +/- 12% versus 57 +/- 13% for women versus men (p < 0.01). Medical management failed in women as often as in men, and rates of cardiac catheterization and percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty or coronary artery bypass graft surgery were similar for women and men in the conservative strategy arm as well as in the invasive strategy arm. Women in the TIMI IIIB trial had proportionately more unstable angina than did men. The proportion of unstable angina and non-Q wave MI for women was similar in the trial and Registry. However, proportionately more men in the trial had non-Q wave MI than men in the Registry.

CONCLUSIONS: 1) Women with each acute coronary syndrome are older than men and have more comorbidity. 2) The outcome with unstable angina and non-Q wave MI is related to severity of illness and not gender. 3) Mortality associated with revascularization for unstable angina and non-Q wave MI was similar for women and men. 4) The proportion of women and men enrolled with each acute coronary syndrome is different. These rates reflect both the prevalence of disease and selection bias owing to trial eligibility criteria and other identified factors.

Trial: TIMI 3B