There is emerging evidence supporting the use of the radial artery (RA) as a preferred secondary conduit for coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) as it is associated with higher rates of graft patency at 5 years when compared with saphenous vein grafts (SVG). The modified Allen’s test (MAT) is traditionally regarded as the standard of care in the assessment of ulnar artery (UA) patency prior to RA harvesting. Unfortunately, due to high false-positive rates, a substantial number of pre-CABG patients are found to have an abnormal MAT despite normal UA patency, resulting in inappropriate exclusion from RA harvesting. The SVG is generally used in its place when this occurs, resulting in potentially lower rates of long-term graft patency.
The CAPITAL iRADIAL-CABG trial is currently enrolling participants 18 years of age or older undergoing CABG for whom the treating physician is considering the use of an RA conduit. Eligible patients will be randomised in a 1:1 fashion to MAT or smartphone-based photoplethysmography application assessment to assess collateral palmar circulation prior to RA harvesting. The primary outcome of the trial is the use of the RA as a conduit during CABG. The primary safety outcome is postoperative palmar ischaemia as determined by clinical assessment or requirement of vascular intervention. Secondary outcomes include vascular complications, early graft failure, need for rescue percutaneous coronary intervention during the index hospitalisation and a composite cardiovascular outcome of myocardial infarction, stroke and cardiovascular death prior to discharge from hospital. A total of 236 participants are planned to be recruited.
The study was approved by the Ottawa Heart Science Network Research Ethics Board (approval number 20180865-01H). The study results will be disseminated via conference presentations and peer-reviewed publications.

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