Association of Physician Certification in Interventional Cardiology With In-Hospital Outcomes of Percutaneous Coronary Intervention

Paul N. Fiorilli, Karl E. Minges, Jeph Herrin, John C. Messenger, Henry H. Ting, Brahmajee K. Nallamothu, Rebecca S. Lipner, Brian J. Hess, Eric S. Holmboe, Joseph J. Brennan, Jeptha P. Curtis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Background - The value of American Board of Internal Medicine certification has been questioned. We evaluated the Association of Interventional Cardiology certification with in-hospital outcomes of patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) in 2010. Methods and Results - We identified physicians who performed ≥10 PCIs in 2010 in the CathPCI Registry and determined interventional cardiology (ICARD) certification status using American Board of Internal Medicine data. We compared in-hospital outcomes of patients treated by certified and noncertified physicians using hierarchical multivariable models adjusted for differences in patient characteristics and PCI volume. Primary end points were all-cause in-hospital mortality and bleeding complications. Secondary end points included emergency coronary artery bypass grafting, vascular complications, and a composite of any adverse outcome. With 510 708 PCI procedures performed by 5175 physicians, case mix and unadjusted outcomes were similar among certified and noncertified physicians. The adjusted risks of in-hospital mortality (odds ratio, 1.10; 95% confidence interval, 1.02-1.19) and emergency coronary artery bypass grafting (odds ratio, 1.32; 95% confidence interval, 1.12-1.56) were higher in the non-ICARD-certified group, but the risks of bleeding and vascular complications and the composite end point were not statistically significantly different between groups. Conclusions - We did not observe a consistent association between ICARD certification and the outcomes of PCI procedures. Although there was a significantly higher risk of mortality and emergency coronary artery bypass grafting in patients treated by non-ICARD-certified physicians, the risks of vascular complications and bleeding were similar. Our findings suggest that ICARD certification status alone is not a strong predictor of patient outcomes and indicate a need to enhance the value of subspecialty certification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1816-1824
Number of pages9
Issue number19
StatePublished - Nov 10 2015


  • acute coronary syndromes
  • acute myocardial infarction
  • angioplasty
  • catheter-based coronary interventions, stents
  • chronic ischemic heart disease
  • coronary revascularization
  • health policy and outcome research
  • registries

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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