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AIMS: To assess contemporary pre-test probability estimates for obstructive coronary artery disease in patients with stable chest pain. METHODS AND RESULTS: In this substudy of a multicentre randomized controlled trial, we compared 2019 European Society of Cardiology (ESC)-endorsed pre-test probabilities with observed prevalence of obstructive coronary artery disease on computed tomography coronary angiography (CTCA). We assessed associations between pre-test probability, 5-year coronary heart disease death or non-fatal myocardial infarction and study intervention (standard care vs. CTCA). The study population consisted of 3755 patients (30-75 years, 46% women) with a median pre-test probability of 11% of whom 1622 (43%) had a pre-test probability of >15%. In those who underwent CTCA (n = 1613), the prevalence of obstructive disease was 22%. When divided into deciles of pre-test probability, the observed disease prevalence was similar but higher than the corresponding median pre-test probability [median difference 2.3 (1.3-5.6)%]. There were more clinical events in patients with a pre-test probability >15% compared to those at 5-15% and <5% (4.1%, 1.5%, and 1.4%, respectively, P 15% (2.8% vs. 5.3%, log rank P = 0.01), although this interaction was not statistically significant on multivariable modelling. CONCLUSION: The updated 2019 ESC guideline pre-test probability recommendations tended to slightly underestimate disease prevalence in our cohort. Pre-test probability is a powerful predictor of future coronary events and helps select those who may derive the greatest absolute benefit from CTCA.

Original publication




Journal article


Eur heart j qual care clin outcomes

Publication Date





293 - 300


Computed tomography coronary angiography, Coronary artery disease, Pre-test probability, Adolescent, Adult, Aged, Angina, Stable, Cardiology, Computed Tomography Angiography, Coronary Angiography, Coronary Occlusion, Electrocardiography, Europe, Female, Humans, Incidence, Male, Middle Aged, Societies, Medical, Survival Rate, Young Adult