We used a stratified randomization process with permuted blocks. The stratification factors were the hospital and, because intraabdominal and infrainguinal operations have different outcomes, the proposed vascular surgery. After randomization, we expected the intended procedure (either cardiac or vascular) to be performed within three weeks. If CABG was planned, we expected the vascular operation to occur within three months. If percutaneous coronary intervention was planned, we expected the vascular operation to be delayed for at least two weeks, owing to an increased risk of an in-stent coronary-artery thrombus. For three days after vascular surgery, blood was collected and sampled for cardiac enzymes and an electrocardiogram was obtained. Three months after surgery, the left ventricular ejection fraction was determined with the use of radionuclide angiography. All patients who underwent randomization had follow-up visits at the local site every three months for the first year and every six months for the remainder of the study.


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